Few things make me happier on an annual basis than rhubarb season. Maybe strawberry-rhubarb pie is old-fashioned, but there’s something about the almost cloyingly sweet juiciness of ripe strawberries paired with the crunchy tartness of rhubarb that sends me over the moon. I love to bake, I love dessert….but I don’t love things to be TOO too sweet. So when spring finally arrives after what feels like an endless New England winter, and that first time I walk into the produce section of my local grocery store and am greeted with a bin of rhubarb….oh man, there are no words for my joy.
Pair this with the fact that Adam loves pie – and I mean, most people like pie, but he LOVES pie – and I knew today that I wanted to surprise him and bake up a scrumptious pie while he was at work. Plus, let’s face it, I just really wanted to eat pie.
The “recipe” I use is cobbled together from various recipes I’ve looked at for strawberry-rhubarb pie along with some trial and error from things I’ve tried over the years, some which worked, some which didn’t.
I personally make my own crust, although for those less dough-inclined, this pie could be so super super simple with a store-bought crust – and they’re not bad nowadays! (Disclaimer: I use store-bought pie crust dough when making chicken pot pie for a quick weeknight dinner.) I’ve also gone through various crust recipes over the years – for a looooong time I stayed with the recipe my aforementioned middle school Home Ec teacher, Mrs. Dobos, gave us. But the one I use now was recommended to me by my mom, and is adapted from a Food Network blueberry pie recipe.
For the crust (2-crust pie):
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter (the original recipe calls for shortening, but I’m religiously a butter girl)
2 Tbsp water
1/2 Tbsp distilled white vinegar
Mix the flour, sugar, and salt in a medium-sized bowl. Cut in the cold butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. For this I use my trusty pastry blender but two butter knives would work fine. (Note: Many people – including my mom – will just throw this in the food processor for ease, and it definitely works, but I have this weird thing where, when I’m making dough, I like to do it by hand and throw some love into it. Cheesy. I’m aware.)
In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, water, and vinegar until blended. Pour it into the dry dough mix and stir lightly with a fork, and then roll up your sleeves and get your fingers in there. Mix it together and knead lightly until the whole thing forms a neat smooth ball.
Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie Filling: