Pies are all about summer and roadside farm stands brimming with baskets of ruby-red field-grown berries. I spent many summers at my grandparents’ farmhouse in the Hamptons, and strawberry-rhubarb pie brings me right back. We make our mini version with either a crisscross lattice top crust or a quick and delicious crumb topping.
Makes 2 Dozen
For the Pie Shells
1 1/2 cups all-purpose fl our, plus extra for rolling
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 tablespoons solid vegetable shortening
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into small bits
3 tablespoons ice water
1 1/2 cups dried beans, for pie weights
For the Pies
6 cups diced fresh rhubarb
6 tablespoons fresh orange juice (from about 1 orange)
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest (from 2 large lemons)
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground cloves
3 cups diced fresh strawberries
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Sweetened whipped cream, for serving (optional)
Pie shells: In a food processor, pulse the flour, sugar, and salt together to combine. Add the shortening and butter, and pulse until crumbly with no bits larger than a small pea. With the machine running, add the ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough forms a ball (don’t let the dough mix for more than 1 minute once you start adding water). Turn the dough out onto your work surface and divide it in half. Flatten each half into a disk and wrap them in plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.
Lightly flour your work surface. Roll 1 dough disk into a K-inch-thick sheet (it doesn’t have to be round). Use a 3-inch round cookie cutter to cut out 24 rounds. Press each round into a 2-inch tart pan with removable bottom, pinching off any overhang. Repeat with the other dough disk. Press the dough scraps together into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate.
Prick the bottom of each crust a few times with a fork. Place the tart pans on a rimmed baking sheet and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut out twenty-four 3-inch squares of aluminum foil.
Remove the baking sheet from the refrigerator and fit each pie shell with a square of foil. Add about 1 tablespoon dried beans to each shell (to prevent the dough from shrinking). Bake until the edges are golden brown, 22 to 24 minutes.
While the crusts are baking, make the lattice tops: On a lightly floured work surface, roll the reserved scraps into a 3/8-inch-thick sheet. Use a pizza cutter or a knife to cut the dough into 1/4-inch-wide, 2-inch-long strips (you’ll need
144 strips total). Transfer them to a parchment-paper- lined baking sheet and refrigerate until needed.
Remove the pie crusts from the oven and let them cool completely before removing the foil and beans. (Place the beans in a jar and reuse them the next time you have to prebake pie shells.)
Pies: Make the filling: In a large skillet, combine the rhubarb, orange juice, lemon zest, sugar, cinnamon, and cloves. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. In a medium bowl, toss the strawberries with the cornstarch; add them to the skillet. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking until the mixture is as thick as jam, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside to cool completely.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Fill each pie crust with 1 tablespoon of the strawberry-rhubarb filling. Remove the dough strips from the refrigerator. Dip 3 strips into the beaten egg and arrange them 3/8-inch apart across the top of a pie, pressing the ends onto the tart pan to seal. Dip another 3 strips in the beaten egg and place them on top of the pie, going in the opposite direction of the first 3 strips. Press off the ends and place the pie on a rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough strips and pie crusts. Bake the pies until golden, about 14 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
Serve: Remove the pies from the tart pans, and serve with a dollop of whipped cream if desired.
Make ahead The pie dough can be refrigerated, wrapped in plastic wrap, for up to 4 days or frozen for up to 1 month. The pie shells can be baked up to 2 days in advance.
The filling can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.
The pies can be baked 1 day before serving. Store them at room temperature.
Copyright © 2011 by Peter Callahan and Raquel Pelze.