Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Strawberry and Rhubarb Pie

I don't make a lot of pies but this one had to be made for Anna's boyfriend, Mike. They met through work and I remember that I used to always give Anna cookies or brownies to take to work but she always said "no one at work likes to eat those sweet things." Very strange, because it's what I eat to survive. Anyway, since then it's stuck in my head that Mike doesn't like sweets.

It came up during conversation at my birthday party and Mike mentioned that he likes strawberry and rhubarb pie and that it was his favorite. I tried telling Anna to make one but she brushed it off saying " I bet Mike doesn't even know what Rhubarb is". She was obviously not paying attention during that conversation. I replied : "No, trust me. When he comes home, ask him if he likes strawberry rhubarb pie and I'll bet he's going to say " I LOVE Strawberry Rhubarb pie!". And that's exactly what he said.

Once again, the baking tasks fall on my shoulders. Not only do I have to bake this pie, I will also be taking a bus to Toronto to deliver it. Okay, it's not as bad as it sounds. My parents are coming to visit for Convocation and I'm busing to Toronto for the night to meet them at the airport.

I don't mind getting assigned all these baking challenges though, it gives me a chance to try new things. I've never made this particular pie before so it's all experimental at this stage.

The crust is definitely the hardest part of the recipe. I used shortening because it makes the flakiest crust you can imagine, but it's extremely difficult to handle. 

2 2/3 cup flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup shortening
3 tbsp cold cream

1. Blend together the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor
2. Add the shortening and mix until crumbly.
3. Add cream, 1 tbsp at a time until the dough pulls away from the sides and resembles wet sand. 
4. Dump out the mixture onto your work bench/table and form into 2 round discs. Wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.

Pie Filling:
2 1/2 cup of rhubarb
3 cups strawberries
1 1/2 cup of sugar
2 tbsp flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tbsp lemon juice

1. Cut the rhubarb into 1 inch pieces. Stem the strawberries and quarter them.
2. Mix everything together and set aside while you roll out the crust.

1.Roll out one of the discs into a large round that can easily cover a 9-inch pie pan. The dough is very delicate so it tears easily. If it breaks, press it back together and keep rolling it out. I did this between 2 sheets of parchment paper to prevent it from sticking.
2.Cover the base of the pan with the first piece of crust and sprinkle the bottom with a tbsp of flour. It will help absorb the liquid from the fruits. 
3.Fill the crust with the pie filling and set aside while rolling out the second piece of crust.
4.Cut star shapes out of the 2nd piece of crust and place it on top of the pie filling.
5. bake in a 375 degrees F oven for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes until the filling has thickened.

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