Strawberry Rhubarb Pie with a Lattice Top Crust

You know how some ties you see a big bucket of delicious ripe strawberries at the store and they are on sale and all you want is to have an excuse to eat all the strawberries?

Well, here you go: strawberry Rhubarb Pie

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This pie is so easy and delicious it is kind of ridiculous. I mean, how can you go wrong with strawberries and rhubarb? You can’t. This is a great versatile pie because with just a shift in ingredients you can make your pie sweet or tangy to your preference. I made mine sweet because my husband likes a sweet pie.

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If I was making it for myself alone I would probably have leaned a little more towards the tart rhubarb but half the fun of making a yummy pie is watching others enjoy it. You can skew it any way you want: More strawberry = Sweeter, more Rhubarb = Tarter 🙂

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As always, make your crust first. Preferably the night before or first thing in the morning so it has time to sit in the fridge and chill. I just made a post devoted to creating the perfect crust. Here’s a link: Crust.

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You can use any fat combination you want: for a lighter tasting crust go all shortening, for a heavier, heartier crust go all butter, for something in the middle do half and half. I did a half and half crust for this pie. It was perfect.

Once you have your crust ready to go, gather your fruit.

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Ingredients (for a sweet pie)

4 1/2 Cups Strawberries halved/thirded (depending on how big your strawberries are, you want them to keep some of their shape, so don’t cut them too small)

2 Cups Rhubarb cut into small pieces (the larger the pieces the tangier they will be)

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar packed

1/2 Cup White Sugar

1/4 Cup Cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon Salt 

(For a more tart pie do 3 1/4 c strawberries and 3 1/4 cup rhubarb or for a really tart pie do 4 1/2 cups rhubarb and 2 cups strawberries! -YUM!)

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Cut up your fruit.

Add dry ingredients.

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Mix until fruit is thoroughly coated.

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Roll out your crust and place bottom crust in pan with pie bird (not necessary, but very cute and helpful – pie birds help reduce overflow and get a non-doughy bottom crust in moist pies)

Roll out your top crust.

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For a lattice top cut your top crust into 1/2 – 3/4 inch strips.

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Fill your bottom crust with the fruit. There will likely be some juice at the bottom, make sure you get it all in there!

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To put on your lattice top crust lay about half of the strips across the pie fairly close to each other. Then weave the second set of strips in by folding back every other strip and laying the new ones across like so:

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Fold the strips back flat across your pie.

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repeat with the next set of strips (fold back, lay down, fold over) until you have used all your strips or the pie is covered.

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Fold your lattice strips under the edge of your bottom crust and pinch into place.

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Brush with an egg wash – one egg white whisked with about 1 T of water. It’s fine if the wash drips in to the pie. This wash is what will give your pie top that beautiful browned look that you want.

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Place on a cookie sheet to catch boiled over sugar deliciousness that would be practically impossible to clean out of your oven.

Place the pie at one level below middle.

Bake for 20 minutes at 400 F.

Reduce temperature to 350 F and bake for another 1 hour 20 – 1 hour 30 minutes.

Let cool until almost completely cold. If it is still hot then it will likely be very runny.

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It has to be very cold for the slice to hold together like this:

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If you don’t mind a little hot strawberry juice, cut it earlier 🙂

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Serve with ice cream or whipped cream or eat it on it’s own! It’s delicious any way you slice it.

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The Perfect Pie Crust Tutorial – With Pictures!

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Crust. In many cases the crust is the most difficult part of the pie. It requires a little know how. You can’t just pop it in the old blender. You have to treat it right.

One of the main things that kept me from making pies was my fear of Crust. The art of creating a perfect crust had eluded me for all of my life. My grandma seemed to be able to dip a cup in a bucket of flour, grab a handful of fat and a sprinkle of water and Bam! The perfect crust!

I tried that method. It didn’t work.

I tried following a strict list of ingredients.

Nope.

What worked was a combination of the two. The strict list of ingredients is a great place to start, understanding what just feels right is where you need to end. So let me tell you what things should feel like and how to get to that perfect point.

Ingredients for Double Crust: (you might as well always make a double crust, you can always freeze one!)

  • Flour: 2 1/4 Cups
  • Fat: 1 Cup (All butter, all shortening, or half and half – my favorite is half and half)
  • Water: 1/2 cup plus 2 T – use more by the sprinkle if necessary
  • Salt: 2 teaspoons
  • Sugar: 2 Tablespoons

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Here is the first key to good crust: Use your hands to mix. Do not use anything else. Just your hands.

Mix all the dry ingredients.

If you are using butter make sure it is cold, straight out of the fridge. Cut into 1/4 inch cubes. For shortening you can just break it up with your fingers once you are working the dough. My favorite crust is half butter half shortening, so that is what I am going to focus on in this post.

Put your fat into your flour mix.

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Mix with your fingers breaking up the shortening and smashing the butter chunks. Don’t touch it too much, you want the butter to stay cold. It should look something like this:

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Next pour in 1/2 cup of cold water. Using your fingers push the ingredients around, lifting and “folding” to push the moisture into the flour and fat mixture. Add water by the teaspoon mixing between each addition until it reaches a moist state but that probably still feels a little dry.

Like this:

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See how there are still quite a few little pieces that aren’t all incorporated? That’s ok, when you press it into balls it should stick. There shouldn’t be a lot of dry flour left, but little dry-ish pieces are fine. If a bunch of the little pieces aren’t sticking when you push it into balls then get your fingers wet and try again.

You want the dough to end up holding easily in a ball without being sticky. It should have a mat look to it. Press gently into two equal balls.

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Wrap in cling wrap and put them in the fridge for at least 3 hours or over night.

Rolling out the dough.

Clear a nice large flat surface and sprinkle with flour. Place your cold dough in the center and sprinkle some flour on top of your dough (so that the rolling-pin doesn’t stick to it)

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Press it into a flat round pancake with the heel of your hand.

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Lift the pancake and sprinkle more flour under it, when you pressed it flat it will probably have stuck to the surface. Begin rolling the dough. You don’t have to press down very hard, just roll the pin across it.

Roll once, turn dough a 1/4 turn.

Roll once, turn dough a 1/4 turn.

Roll once, turn dough a 1/4 turn.

This will keep it from sticking to your surface and ripping when you try to transfer it to your pie pan.

Continue this pattern until it is large enough to fill your pie pan and fall a bit over the sides.

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See those big yellow spots of butter? That’s great!

If you are rolling and get cracks at your edges that’s ok. Just smush them together with your fingers then keep rolling.

Crack:

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Fixed!

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Fold your crust in half and place in the pie pan. Unfold it and press lightly into the pan so that it fits just right. Cut the excess off the edges leaving about an inch hanging over the edge of the pan. Pinch or press decoratively.

If you are doing a top crust brush it with an egg wash (an egg white whisked with a Tablespoon of water) to get a beautiful browned color.

For pictures and instructions on making a lattice top crust see my Strawberry Rhubarb pie post! Or just lay the crust over the top of your pie, cut a few vents, and pinch into place.

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A delicious crust can take a pie from ok to amazing. I hope this post helps to do that for you!