I searched for ages for a plain rhubarb pie with a "from scratch" pie pastry (without horrible shortening) and failed. So I came up with my own one, and this was a major success! It's absolutely VITAL to keep the butter as chilled as possible during the pastry preparation. Also vital to chill the pastry before working with it. If you let it melt the pastry will not come out flaky and tasty.
- Mix together the flour, 1 tbspn caster sugar and salt in a large bowl.
- Take the chilled butter and cut it into small cubes, about 1cm square.
- Return the butter to the fridge to rechill it.
- Take it out and mix it into the flour mixture, using a food processor, pastry blender, or your fingers (if you have cold hands). Work as quickly as possible.
- Return it to the fridge to rechill if any of the butter has softened.
- Put some ice cubes in the water.
- Take out the pastry mix and one tablespoon at a time add the ice water, mixing using a flat butter knife. Keep adding until the pastry starts to pull together.
- Working quickly, form the pastry into two separate balls.
- Wrap them in gladwrap.
- Chill in fridge for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Take one ball of dough and roll it into a rough circle.
- Press it into a pie dish, about 20cm diameter, shallow.
- Make sure it goes over the top edges of the pie dish.
- Return to fridge to chill again.
- Chop up the rhubarb in small cubes and place in a mixing bowl.
- Add cornflour and 200 g caster sugar and mix together.
- Place this filling into the pie case.
- With the other ball of dough, roll out flat and then cut into lattice strips.
- Lay strips over pie case, pressing to the edge.
- Brush strips with milk and sprinkle raw sugar.
- Bake for 45 minutes Check as it bakes to make sure pastry edges aren't going too brown - if they are, drop it down a shelf in the oven.