When I see bins of bright pink spears of rhubarb and baskets of scarlet strawberries, I must sweep them up and make a pie. I don’t know who first paired the flavors of strawberries and rhubarb, but it is a most compatible marriage. The combination of sweet and tart works again and again. If I had to name my favorite pie, this one would be in the forefront.
Pie crust (Make two recipes*)
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 t salt
1 T sugar
8 T unsweetened butter cut into small cubes
3 T vegetable shortening
4 T ice water
Pulse flour, salt and sugar in food processor to mix. Add butter and shortening. Mix briefly. You should still see small bits of butter in mixture. Sprinkle around metal disk 3 T of the water. Pulse briefly. Check to see if mixture holds together between fingers. Add a little more if needed. Pulse but don't let ball form. Empty mixture on a sheet of plastic wrap. Press out with heel of hand (frissage) and form into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1/2 hour.
*I prefer making dough for each crust separately, but if you prefer, you can double recipe and then divide in half.
4 cups fresh rhubarb, cleaned and sliced into ½ pieces
3 cups fresh strawberries, cleaned, hulled, and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
1 ¼ cups sugar
½ t cinnamon
Zest from one orange
4 T instant tapioca
¼ t salt
2 T unsalted butter cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 T milk
2 T raw sugar
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a 9-inch pie plate with pastry, leaving a ½-inch overhang. Chill in freezer or refrigerator while making the filling. Combine rhubarb and strawberries in a bowl. Add sugar, cinnamon, orange zest, tapioca and salt. Shake and combine well to mix dry ingredients with fruit and let stand 15 minutes.
Roll out the top pastry to a 12-inch circle. Drain excess liquid from pie filling.** Pour filling into pastry shell and dot with butter. Cover with top pastry folding top edge under bottom. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Make three cuts on top of pie to let out steam. Place pie on an aluminum foil covered cookie sheet and set on shelf in lower third of oven. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, then lower temperature to 350 for 35 to 40 minutes until crust is golden brown and juices are bubbling up through cuts on top. Let cool on a rack before serving.
This pie can be made with a lattice crust.
**Draining the liquid from the filling will assure a firm, not runny, filling after the pie is baked.