Saturday, May 12, 2012

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie for Mom

Eleanor Carter Brubaker

In honor of Mother’s Day tomorrow, and in honor of my mom, who was a fabulous cook, I am sharing my recipe for Strawberry Rhubarb Pie, and my mom’s classic recipe for pie crust. It makes flaky, soft crust that melts in your mouth, and is a thousand times better than store-bought pie crusts. I have adapted it somewhat – to be prepared in a food processor – to make it easier and faster to prepare, without noticing any change in its character. Why not make a pie today?

Susan’s Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
2-3 cups chopped rhubarb
2-3 cups chopped strawberries
1/4 c. flour
1/4 c. cornstarch OR 5 Tablespoons tapioca
1 cup sugar

Prepare enough dough for a double pie crust. (See Ellie's Pie Crust recipe below for a fabulous hand-made one; store-made crusts can't compare.) Put bottom crust in pie plate. Toss rhubarb and strawberries with flour, thickener and sugar, then place in pie crust. Put top crust on, seal and crimp. Cut five slits in the top.

Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes, and then reduce heat to 350 degrees for 40-45 more minutes. Allow to cool before cutting.

Ellie’s Pie Crust

This recipe makes enough for two single pie crusts, or one double and/or lattice crust, with plenty left over to be buttered and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar, then baked to make tasty cookies that are wonderful warm from the oven while you wait for your pie.

In a food processor, place:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 t. salt
1 T sugar
1/8 t. baking powder
1 cup vegetable shortening (such as Crisco)

Pulse in the food processor until the shortening is mixed in, and dough is in small chunks. (This is the part I used to do manually with a pastry cutter.)

Prepare a glass of ice water. Sprinkle in, one tablespoonful at a time, 4 to 6 tablespoons of ice water (but no ice!), while pulsing. A ball of dough will form in the food processor when you have added the right amount of water. Do not add any more than 6 tablespoons or your crust will not be flaky!

Place dough in a plastic bag and chill. Use within 24 hours. Roll out to about 1/8" thick on wax paper that has been sprinkled with flour, adding a bit more flour if the rolling pin sticks. Flip dough over onto the pie pan, trim edges a bit, fold under and crimp. Fill and bake. For pies requiring a baked crust, place on the center rack of a 425 degree oven for 10 minutes.

Love you, miss you, Mom!