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Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

Serves 8

Pastry dough for a single-crust pie (recipe follows)
1 1/2 pints strawberries, stemmed
2 cups diced rhubarb (see note)
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
Sweetened whipped cream, for accompaniment

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Prepare the pastry dough and roll it out to line a 9-inch pie pan. Flute the edge of the shell. Prick the bottom of the shell several times with a fork. Press aluminum foil into the bottom and up the sides of the shell and cover the foil with pie weights or raw rice or dried beans to weight the pastry and keep it from swelling during the early stage of baking.

Bake for 8 minutes. Remove the foil and weights and continue to bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the crust is lightly browned. Cool before filling.

Place half the strawberries in apot. Mash with a fork or potato masher. Add the rhubarb and one cup of sugar. Combine the cornstarch, 1/2 cup water, lemon juice, and salt in a small bowl and stir to dissolve the cornstarc. Add to the strawberry-rhubarb mixture. Cook over medium heat until the mixture is thick and rhubarb is tender, stirring often.

Halve the remaining strawberries and arrange them in the baked pie shell. Pour the strawberry-rhubarb mixture over the berries, cover and chill.

Serve topped with whipped cream.

Note: If rhubarb is tough, peel it as you would celery.


Pastry Dough for a Single-Crust Pie

Makes 1 9-inch crust

1 1-/-2 cups all-purpose flour
3-/-4 teaspoons salt
1-/-2 cup vegetable shortening
3 to 4 tablespoons cold water

Sift together the flour and the salt into a mixing bowl. Work the shortening into the flour with your fingertips or a pastry blender, until the mixture has the consistency of coarse meal. Add the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and mix with a fork after each addition. Dough should not be wet, but just moist enough to hold together. Form the dough into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 15 to 30 minutes before rolling. When ready, roll dough out on floured surface to fit in the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie dish.

Source: Chesapeake Bay Cooking with John Shields (Broadway, 2004)

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