Thursday, May 7, 2009

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

adapted from Smitten Kitchen

I love pie. Really love it. And strawberry rhubarb happens to be one of my all time favorites. Unfortunately, fresh rhubarb is only available in early spring (cooler climates), so you have to act quickly to get a piece of the action. Because this sour stalk waits for no one. And she is so worth it.

2 (9 inch) pie crusts *top and bottom
3 1/2 cups of sliced rhubarb
3 1/2 cups sliced strawberries
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt

1 large egg + 1 tsp water

Preheat oven to 400. Combine rhubarb, strawberries, sugars, cornstarch, cinnamon and salt. Toss gently to combine.

This is a very juicy pie, so you may have to take some precautions so your bottom crust doesn't get soggy. I would recommend a "blind bake" where you press the crust into the pan, line it with parchment paper or a coffee filter and fill it with hard beans or rice to help it hold it's shape. Bake the crust for 20 minutes with the weights, then remove them and bake an additional 10 minutes. You can also brush egg white on the bottom before adding the filling to better seal it from the juice. Another tip is to bake the pie (when the filling is inside) on the lowest possible position to transfer more heat to the bottom crust and help dry it out before it absorbs too much liquid.

After preparing the bottom pie crust, pour the filling in the pie and place the other crust on top. Carve out a hole to release steam and brush on the egg wash and sprinkle the top with a little sugar. Cover edges loosely with foil and bake for about 25 minutes on 400, then remove foil, reduce the heat and bake an additional 25 minutes at 350.

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