Bake the Book: Strawberry Rhubarb Pie


[Photograph: Sara Remington]

If you decide to make this pie, and you've never tried rhubarb before, take a bite of it, raw. It's got a mouthwatering green tang that is rather unique (and very tart), one that morphs as it's being steeped in sugar and cooked. Teeny's Tour of Pie: A Cookbook does exactly that, adding strawberries to the mix and enveloping the whole thing in a whole wheat crust, which is a bit denser and heartier than your standard white flour crust. It's like the difference between whole-wheat and plain pasta; bit more of a chew, and a nuttier flavor. There are also instructions to make a set of four tiny pies, if you plan on having the cutest dinner party ever.

Tips: "Quick-cooking tapioca, finely ground" is what's used to thicken the fruit found in this pie. This means ground tapioca pearls. They are available as pearls, from brands such Bob's Red Mill (sold in stores like Whole Foods), but we've also seen tapioca powder for sale, at Asian groceries. If you absolutely cannot find tapioca pearls or powder, you can substitute with the same amount of cornstarch.

Tweaks: Far be it from us to mess with a pairing like strawberry and rhubarb, but a little vanilla would mellow out the fruit even further. Scrape out the seeds of a whole bean into the macerating fruit, or add a teaspoon of vanilla extract. Or, if you find a whole-wheat crust to be a little too rustic, sprinkle turbinado sugar onto it partway through baking.

As always with our Bake the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Teeny's Tour of Pies to give away.

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