Classic strawberry-rhubarb pie

By Julie Van Rosendaal on July 08, 2013

For this month's Canadian Food Experience Projectround-up, our assignment is regional food; I live in Alberta, so that could mean anything from beef and bison to canola to lentils. But looking out into my back yard (and more so, over the fence into my neighbours' yard), rhubarb is about as local as it gets from the standpoint of my kitchen.

So lets go with that.

Canadians from coast to coast tend to have a surplus of fresh rhubarb ripe for the picking at this time of year. Much of it will turn into pies, but its ruby red colour and tang make it perfect for strawberry-rhubarb jam or a divine summer cocktail, and simmered rhubarb makes for a brilliant pink vinaigrette or a fine base for a tangy barbecue sauce. As with other produce, there are different varieties of rhubarb out there - some is spindly and green rather than thick and red - it's just as edible, if not as visually appealing. If your plant is getting old and woody, it may need dividing - there are great instructions on the Canadian Gardening website.

Meanwhie, there's pie. What's summer without at least one strawberry-rhubarb pie? Enjoy!

Classic Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie
adapted from Food Network
pastry for a double crust pie
2 1/2-3 cups chopped fresh rhubarb
2 1/2-3 cups halved, hulled strawberries
1- 1 1/2 cups sugar
2 Tbsp instant tapioca or cornstarch
1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 Tbsp butter, cut into bits
1 egg, lightly beaten (optional)

Divide your pastry in half, making once piece slightly larger than the other. Roll it out on a lightly floured surface to about 10" and fit into a pie plate without stretching. (If you like, line smaller pie plates with pastry for smaller or individual pies.) Preheat the oven to 425F.

In a large bowl, comine the rhubarb, strawberries, sugar, tapioca, flour, lemon zest and juice and vanilla. Pour into the bottom crust and dot with butter.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the other piece of dough and place over filling, or cut into strips and top the pie with a lattice top. Trim the edges and crimp to seal. If you like, brush the top with beaten egg.
Bake for 15 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375 F and bake for an additional 45 to 50 minutes, or until the pastry is golden and the filling is bubbly. If the crust is browning too quickly, cover the affected areas with strips of foil.

Let cool in the pan on a wire rack until cool enough to slice and eat. Serves 8.

By Julie Van Rosendaal| July 08, 2013

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