Rhubarb Pistachio Pie

Recipe Development by Allison Kave and Keavy Landreth

The Drunk Baker’s, our cocktail and baking dynamos Allison Kave and Keavy Landreth of Butter & Scotch, are back with a new summery pie. Rhubarb’s tart, slightly vegetal flavor is complex and beautiful when combined with the nutty richness of buttery frangipane, which is normally made with almonds and used as the base of classic French fruit tarts. Here, they swap the almonds for pistachios, and layer a fluffy pillow of this creamy concoction at the bottom of an all-butter piecrust to absorb the sweet-tart juices of the rhubarb. It’s the perfect hit of vibrant flavor you crave when the world starts to bloom again.

Rhubarb Pistachio Pie
Makes 1 (10-inch) pie
  • All-Butter Piecrust (recipe follows)
  • Pistachio Frangipane (recipe follows)
  • Rhubarb Filling (recipe follows)
  • Egg wash or milk, for brushing
  • Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling
  1. Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C).
  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll half of All-Butter Piecrust into a 12-inch circle, ⅛ to ¼ inch thick. Transfer to a 10-inch pie plate, and trim excess dough to 1 inch beyond edge of plate. Spread Pistachio Frangipane into prepared crust. If you’re using a pie bird, place it in the center. Spread Rhubarb Filling over Pistachio Frangipane.
  3. Roll remaining All-Butter Piecrust into an 11-inch circle. Place dough over filling. Trim excess dough. Fold edges under, and crimp as desired. Brush with egg wash or milk. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar. If you’re not using a pie bird, cut vents in top of dough to release steam. Place pie on a baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F (180°C), and bake until crust is golden and filling is set, 30 to 40 minutes more (you’ll see thick juices bubbling out when it’s ready). Let cool completely on a wire rack, at least 1 hour. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for up to 1 week. Let come to room temperature before serving, or warm it in a low oven. Pie can also be frozen, covered in plastic wrap and foil, for up to 2 months. Let come to room temperature before serving.

All-Butter Piecrust
Makes 1(10-inch) double piecrust
  • 1 cup (227 grams) unsalted European-style cultured butter
  • ½ cup (120 grams) whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon (15 grams) apple cider vinegar (or any light-colored, mild vinegar)
  • 3 cups (375 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour, chilled
  • 2 tablespoons (24 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (9 grams) kosher salt
  1. Cut butter into ½-inch cubes (a bench scraper is perfect for this, but a sharp knife works well, too), and return to refrigerator or freezer to cool.
  2. In a liquid measuring cup, stir together milk and vinegar. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. On a clean flat surface or in a large shallow bowl, toss together flour, sugar, and salt. Add butter to dry ingredients, and using a pastry blender, cut butter into flour mixture with speed and patience, until it has been reduced to small pea-sized chunks. Spread mixture out gently to expose as much surface area as possible, then gently drizzle about half of milk mixture over flour mixture, trying to cover as wide an area as you can. Using bench scrapers or a large spoon, toss flour mixture over the liquid (don’t stir, just lightly toss), spread everything out again, and repeat process with second half of liquid. You should now have a dough that will just hold together when pressed against the bowl, with visible little chunks of butter. If you need to add more liquid to bind it, do so with more cold milk, adding 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach the right texture. It’s not an exact science, as everything from the humidity in the air to the dryness of your flour will affect the consistency of your dough. Once you’ve reached your goal, wrap dough tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Dough will keep refrigerated for up to 1 week, well wrapped, or frozen for up to 2 months.

Pistachio Frangipane
Makes 1 cup
  • ⅔ cup (75 grams) shelled pistachios, toasted
  • ⅓ cup (67 grams) granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons (84 grams) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 large egg (50 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon (8 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon (1 gram) vanilla extract
  1. In the work bowl of a food processor, pulse together pistachios and sugar until sandy. Add butter, egg, flour, and vanilla; pulse until smooth.

Rhubarb Filling
Makes about 3½ cups
  • ¾ cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (24 grams) cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1½ pounds (680 grams) fresh rhubarb, tough strings removed and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
  • Zest of 1 medium orange
  1. In a large bowl, stir together sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Add rhubarb and zest, tossing to coat.


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