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Strawberry season makes North Carolina people happy, and with good reason. At this point in the heart of May, farmer’s markets tend to have a bountiful supply such that even the tardy-arriving market-goers have a good chance of finding sweet ripe strawberries, enough to eat, sprinkle on cereal, cook into jam, and bake into pies. You can find pick-your-own strawberry patches as well, here in Piedmont North Carolina, though I confess to having offered grateful prayers to the people who’ve gone in there and done the picking by the time I go looking for a berry supply.

Rhubarb grows happily in this area, but since I needed to bake my pies last night, I sought out rhubarb at my local Whole Foods, and they had lovely red stalks galore. Ripe rhubarb varies in its redness, ranging from an avocado-green to lipstick-red, and while the flavor isn’t affected, the red color does add eye-candy. When paired with strawberries as in this pie, you’ll get red-gorgeousness aplenty, regardless of what your rhubarb brings to the pastry. This is a tic-tac-toe-board pie, not a proper lattice-top pie, since carefully criscrossing and interweaving the pastry strips is something I admire greatly in others but cannot actually do with great skill. Nobody complained, and this pie disappeared at this morning’s Triangle Food Bloggers First Annual Bake Sale to benefit Share Our Strength. Great cause, great company from my fellow food-folk, and great goodies. More on that to come…

Nancie’s Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

 Pastry for a 9-inch double-crust pie

1 1/4 cups sugar

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 cups chopped fresh rhubarb, cut into 1/2-inch chunks (about 1 pound)

2 cups hulled and chopped fresh strawberries, cut into 1-inch chunks

(1 pint, about 8 ounces)

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 1/4-inch chunks

Heat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a 9-inch pie pan with crust, leaving a 1-inch overhang.

In a large bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt, and use a fork or a whisk to stir them together well. Add the rhubarb, strawberries, and lemon juice and mix very gently using a large spoon. Scrape the mixture into the piecrust, and distribute the butter bits evenly over the strawberry-rhubarb filling. Top the filling with a lattice crust; or simply lay out a tic-tac-toe crust, placing strips in one direction, and then laying the other-directional strips on top of the first batch.

Place the pie on a baking sheet to catch spills, and place it on the bottom rack of the oven. Bake at 425 degrees F for 15 minutes, and then lower the temperature to 350 degrees. Bake until the pink filling bubbles up and the pastry is golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes more. Place the pie on a cooling rack or a folded kitchen towel and let it cool for at least 15minutes. Serve it warm or at room temperature.

Makes one 9-inch pie


I’ve made this using frozen fruit, both the strawberries and the rhubarb, with great results. If using frozen, don’t defrost — chop any gigantic chunks of fruit while they are still frozen, or just leave them whole. Don’t worry if your rhubarb isn’t fire-engine red— the flavor will be there and it’s a fantastic pie, no matter what.

About the Author
Nancie McDermott is a food writer and cooking teacher, and the author of ten cookbooks. Her passion is researching and celebrating traditional food in its cultural context, and her beloved subjects are two seemingly different places with much in common: the cuisines of Asia and of the American South. Nancie gained her Southern kitchen wisdom as a Piedmont North Carolina native,and her Asian culinary research commenced soon after college, when she was sent to northeastern Thailand as a Peace Corps volunteer.
  1. itsybitsybrianna Reply

    this looks SUPER amazing!
    Please stop by and say hi!

    • Nancie McDermott Reply

      Itsybitsybrianna, your artwork is more colorful and gorgeous than my strawberry-rhubarb pie! What a fine gallery you’ve created for your artwork. I’m going to enjoy following along. Thanks for your ‘sweet’ statement about my pie.

  2. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide Reply

    Aren’t strawberries and cinnamon a divine combination? Great pie.

    • Nancie McDermott Reply

      Rufus, so agree with you about strawberries and cinnamon. Looked at your blog and I love it. Magnificent photographs, I’ll enjoy cooking and feasting my eyes.

  3. Pingback: Green Eats

    • Nancie McDermott Reply

      Matt, I am looking at the Triangle Food Bloggers bake sale photos and feeling happy and proud, except when I realize that I did not get myself some of your culinary contribution. My just desserts (but I think it was savory? bacon?) for getting there late! I am so going to make your goat curry.

  4. Jenny Levine Reply

    I bought a slice of this pie from you at the bake sale yesterday and brought it home for my husband (the cupcake and buttermilk pie were for me!) and he LOVED it. SO grateful to you for sharing your recipe! A million thanks. I hope the bake sale was a big success and that yo all will do it again soon. 🙂

    • Nancie McDermott Reply

      Jenny, I love this message! Isn’t that the best — you bought it, which made $ for the wonderful cause; your husband got to eat it; and now you can make it yourself in case he has found it to be habit-forming. And if you need recipes for the buttermilk pie and the carmel cupcakes, you know where to find me now! The bake sale was a great success, $650 to Share Our Strength this very first year. We’re all thrilled and already signing up to do it again next year. Matt of and DurhamFoodie who blogs at got the group together and handled logistics to make it happen. Grateful to them and to ‘shoppers’ like you.

  5. Jenny Levine Reply

    Thank you, Nancie! Next year I’ll bring a box for all the desserts I buy, AND my copy of Southern Cakes if you don’t mind signing it.

    • Nancie McDermott Reply

      Oh, that would be so fine, my pleasure. Bringing a box is brilliant — we should promote that idea for the good of the sale, and all food bloggers bring more stuff. People can stock up for the weekend, not just the morning!

  6. Pingback: Pie Party Rhubarb Pie « Nancie McDermott

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