This past weekend was the Ultimate, Once-In-A-Lifetime Pi Day. And so I emerged from my baking hibernation to celebrate, because one only encounters 3-14-15 @ 9:26:53am once in a lifetime. It's a nerd holiday, okay?
One of my favorite pie ingredients is rhubarb, and so for the occasion, I made a raspberry-rhubarb pie--or is it a rhuspberry pie? raspbarby pie? rhupberry pie? raspbarb pie?
Whatever you want to call it, the Pi pie was divine, encompassing all the wonderful sweet and tart conundrum of flavors that rhubarb is so well-known for, accompanied by a no-nonsense, lightly vanilla-scented, flakey pie crust. And to set the scene: red tulips, for the everlasting, irrational love of pi(e).
(Pi Pie Pan is available here. This one was sent to me as a promo a couple of years ago when the company was kickstarting; but I didn't get a chance to bust it out until this year. As is always the case on this blog, I wouldn't be telling you about something unless I use and love it myself.)
Read on for recipe...
Raspberry Rhubarb "Rhuspberry" Pie
makes one 9-inch pie (or equivalently-sized pan)
for pie crust
3 cups AP flour
½ tspn salt
½ tspn ground cinnamon
1 cup butter
½ Tbspn vanilla extract
½ Tbspn rose water
~9 Tbspn ice water
for filling and final baking
24 oz. fresh raspberries
12 oz. fresh rhubarb, chopped into ½-inch pieces
1 cup sugar
4 Tbspn tapioca starch
2 tspn rose water, optional
2 tspn gin, optional
1 Tbspn lemon juice, optional
milk or cream
2. Using a pastry cutter, cut the cold butter into the flour, until the size of small peas.
3. Gradually add the vanilla extract, rose water, and ice water--1 Tbspn at a time--until, when you press the dough between your fingers, it holds together. Do not overmix!
4. Wrap the dough in parchment paper or plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.
5. Place one oven rack in the middle of the oven and the other oven rack in the bottom 1/3 of the oven. Place a cookie sheet on the lower rack of the oven. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
6. To prepare the filling, combine the raspberries, chopped rhubarb, sugar, tapioca starch, rose water, gin, lemon juice, and egg in a bowl. Mix well. Let sit.
7. Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Divide the dough into two pieces--2/3 versus 1/3, reserving the smaller piece for the lattice top. Roll out the larger piece to about 1/8-inch thick. Place the dough in the pie plate, trimming off the excess. Place in the freezer or refrigerator to keep the dough cold, if necessary.
8. Using a slotted spoon, spoon the filling into the pie crust. Try not to add too much of the liquid (a little bit is fine).
9. Roll out the remaining pastry and cut into strips. Arrange the strips in a lattice crust on top of the pie.
10. Brush the top of the lattice crust with a small bit of milk or cream. Sprinkle with a generous amount of turbinado sugar.
11. Place the pie on the cookie sheet on the lower rack of the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes at 425 degrees F. Then, move just the pie to the middle rack, leaving the cookie sheet on the lower rack to catch any drips. Turn the oven temperature down to 375 degrees F and continue to bake for 30-35 minutes longer, until the pie is bubbling slowly and vicously, and the edges are golden brown.
12. Remove the pie from the oven and let cool before serving. Serve with a dash of cream, if desired.