This recipe came about by accident when I was making a strawberry rhubarb pie, ran low on strawberries, and added a container of fresh blackberries to compensate. It turned out to be a great combination. We have harvested close to 30 lbs. of rhubarb from our yard in the last 5 weeks and have enjoyed baking with it and sharing it with neighbors. It has also been fun to sample the neighbors’ baked goods made with the shared rhubarb. One brought me a slice of sugar-free strawberry rhubarb pie made with agave nectar and honey that was delicious; I would never have known it was sugar-free. Another neighbor made a tasty rhubarb cobbler made with a cake-like topping.
This pie crust recipe is a variation on my husband’s family heirloom pie crust, brought over from Scotland by his maternal great-great-grandmother. Her great-granddaughter, my mother-in-law, was an an excellent pie maker. Her secret, to my surprise, was using room-temperature lard instead of cold, because you can work it into the flour much more quickly, and the less handling the better. She taught most of her grandchildren how to make this crust. My husband has the expert touch with pie crust; he usually makes it for me, rolling it out nice and thin. I think this pie tastes best when allowed to sit overnight.
Rhubarb Blackberry Strawberry Pie
Heirloom Scottish Pie Crust (makes enough for 2 double-crust pies)
1-1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1-1/2 c. pastry flour
1-1/2 c. 00 flour
3/4 tsp. fine sea salt
1-1/2 c. room-temperature lard
2/3 c. ice water
Rhubarb Blackberry Strawberry Filling
3-1/2 c. chopped rhubarb
1 (6 oz.) container fresh blackberries
1-1/2 c. sliced strawberries
1-1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. cornstarch
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
juice of half an orange
1/2 tsp. orange zest
1 tsp. vanilla extract
For the crust: Combine flours in a large bowl. Add salt and mix. Add lard and mix with your hands to resemble coarse crumbs. Add water and barely mix it until it holds together; do not handle too much. Roll into 2 circles on flat surface with as little flour as possible (just to keep from sticking). Place first circle in a 9-inch deep dish pie plate. Add the filling. Top with second circle of crust. Crimp the edges. Cut slits in top of pie. Bake at 375 degrees for 50-60 minutes until filling is bubbling in the middle. Remove from oven and cool on rack.
For the Filling: In a large bowl combine fruit. Add sugar, cornstarch and salt. Stir to blend ingredients. Add cinnamon, orange juice and zest, and vanilla. Mix to combine. Let sit 10-15 minutes. Pour into prepared crust. Makes 1 (9-inch) deep dish pie. Serves 8.
Note: If you do not have access to 00 flour, mix half pastry flour and half all-purpose flour for the crust. Also, this crust recipe makes two pies. You can freeze it for another time or make cookies by cutting the dough out with cookie cutters and sprinkling it with cinnamon sugar, then baking the cookies for 10 minutes or less at 375 degrees.