Five Spice Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Recipe
I can’t think of a more classic American dessert than Strawberry Rhubarb Pie. An early summer favorite, this pie is always eagerly anticipated when the first stalks of rhubarb begin to peek out of cool spring soil. Interestingly enough, it is a variation of a much older classic dessert from England – the basic rhubarb pie.
The nine-mile radius around Leeds, Wakefield and Morley, England is commonly referred to as “Rhubarb Triangle”. It is here that in the late 19th Century, farmers began harvesting rhubarb by candlelight in forcing sheds for an early winter harvest. At its peak (1900-1939), Rhubarb Triangle spanned an area of more than 30 square miles and produced 90% of the world’s supply of rhubarb.
A native of Siberia, rhubarb grows wild throughout the high plains of the Midwest and Rocky Mountain regions of America. Early American pioneers brought rhubarb with them from the East Coast and began cultivating it as they settled the western wilds because it was their primary source of Vitamin C as they traveled to unknown lands.
Through the use of Chinese five spice and fresh cracked pepper, this recipe offers a unique variation to the strawberry rhubarb pie we all grew up eating. The flavor combination of strawberry and black pepper is an age-old one – the pepper enhances the sweetness of the strawberry. When used sparingly, Chinese Five Spice adds an additional depth of flavor to this pie that will leave you wanting another slice.
ITEMS WE USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE