From Zingerman's Bakehouse Cookbook.
- 9-in [23-cm] double pie crust, unbaked (recipe at left)
- Rhubarb, cut into 1-in [2.5-cm] pieces 6 1/2 cups 910 g
- Granulated sugar 1 1/3 cups 270 g
- Sea salt 1/8 tsp
- Cornstarch 3 1/2 Tbsp 34 g
- Demerara sugar, for sprinkling
- Large egg 1
- Egg yolk 1
- Water 1 Tbsp
About this recipe
AMY: This is my favorite summer pie! Its fresh tartness is a welcome change after our winter baking, which is full of nuts, chocolate, and cinnamon. We’ve chosen to keep this a pure rhubarb pie—no strawberries—and with as little sugar as possible, in order to focus on the rhubarb.
We understand that many people like to add strawberries to their rhubarb pie. If that’s what you prefer, reduce the weight of the rhubarb and substitute some strawberries. You may also want to reduce the sugar to compensate for the sweet berries.
We aim to use only local Michigan rhubarb, since it’s widely grown here and we love baking with local ingredients in season. The funny thing is that as customers we sometimes don’t want to wait for the local season.
When we see rhubarb in the grocery stores, we want it. The first rhubarb that arrives in Michigan stores comes from Washington state, which has a growing season that is at least a full month earlier than ours. Holding off until Michigan rhubarb arrives is one of the tensions of being local and seasonal while living in a society in which practically everything is avail- able regardless of the season.
Be sure to leave time for the rhubarb and sugar to meld overnight. This generous marinating time makes sure that the pie is plenty juicy and that the sugar liquefies adequately. When we created this pie we discovered that fresh rhubarb varies greatly in its moisture content, and sometimes we’d end up with a dry filling. By following this marinating process we have a consistently juicy pie.
1. In a mixing bowl, combine the rhubarb pieces and granulated sugar. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
2. Drain the liquid from the rhubarb into a saucepan. Put the salt and cornstarch into a small bowl. Remove one-fourth of the total liquid from the saucepan, and gradually pour it into the cornstarch, stirring to make a slurry.
3. Bring the remaining liquid in the saucepan to a boil. Stir the slurry into the liquid and simmer until the mixture is clear. Remove from the heat, and add the rhubarb pieces. Cool to room temperature.
4. Preheat the oven to 375°F [190°C] 20 minutes prior to baking.
5. Roll out the dough for the bottom crust, and fit it into a 9-in [23-cm] pie pan. Add the cooled filling to the unbaked pie shell. Make the egg wash by beating together the egg, egg yolk, and water, and brush the edge of the dough lightly.
6. Roll out the top crust, and place it on the filled pie. Follow the directions on page 64 to finish the pie crust. Brush the entire top of the pie with egg wash, cut four vents into it, and sprinkle with Demerara sugar.
7. Place the pie on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 45 to 50 minutes. The pie is done when the juices are bubbling in the center and the crust is a dark golden color. Remove from the oven and let the pie cool to room temperature before serving (this will allow the juices to thicken).