Why This Recipe Works
Sweet strawberries and tart rhubarb are a winning flavor combination, but they can turn into a soupy mess when baked unless you take steps to manage their high water content. In our recipe, we macerate the rhubarb and some of the strawberries with sugar to draw out their excess liquid; then we cook the resulting syrup down with the remaining strawberries to make a jam-like mixture that is folded back into the rhubarb. Because we have removed the excess water, we are able to use less thickener and more fruit than is used in most strawberry-rhubarb pies, which results in an intensely flavored filling that is chunky and softly gelled. To complement the tartness of the fruit, we top our double-crust pie with a generous amount of water and sugar, which bakes to a crackly finish.