Ina Garten Revealed Her Favorite Spring Dessert (And It's A Must-Try)

One of the best things about spring is the introduction of local produce into farmer's markets and grocery stores. Not to mention the longer, warmer days ahead. Early spring brings fresh herbs, asparagus, peas, beets, and rhubarb, a vegetable many treat like fruit.

To help us decide what to make for the season, Ina Garten took to Instagram to share her favorite Spring dessert: a raspberry rhubarb crostata. According to Garten, this dessert works because the combination of tart rhubarb and sweet raspberries creates a harmonious balance further complemented by a buttery pie crust. For those who have never tried rhubarb, its taste resembles a sour green apple. Visually, it boasts a beautiful pink hue. To balance its tartness, rhubarb is often accompanied by lots of sugar and sweet berries, usually strawberries.

Called a galette in French, crostata, the Italian word for tart, is a free-form open-crust dessert. The flaky pie dough is folded over the filling to reveal the naked fruit in the center. Garten makes both components for her crostata from scratch, but using your favorite packaged pie crust can shave an hour off. To make the crust, pulse flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor before adding cold butter cubes, then continue pulsing until pea-sized. Ice water is then slowly added until the dough comes together. Homemade pie dough needs to be refrigerated until firm before rolling it out.

How to make Ina Garten's raspberry rhubarb crostata

To make the raspberry and rhubarb filling, cook rhubarb, raspberries, sugar, orange zest, and juice over medium heat. As the mixture simmers for five minutes, combine cornstarch and water to make a slurry that will thicken the filling as it continues to cook for a few more minutes. Once the fruit is jammy, it should be refrigerated before assembling.

To assemble the crostata, roll your pie dough into a 12-inch round and place it on a parchment-lined baking sheet before filling. Add the fruit to the center, leaving a 1 ½-inch border around the outside. Fold the fruitless edges over the filling, brush them with an egg wash, and sprinkle with more sugar. Bake the crostata for 30 to 35 minutes at 425 degrees Fahrenheit or until the crust is golden brown and the fruit filling has thickened.

Like any pie, a raspberry rhubarb crostata can only be improved with a dollop of fresh whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Since the flat pie is thinner than a traditional double-crusted pie, it takes half the time to bake. Crostatas are charming and effortlessly easy to assemble (especially when using packaged pie crust), so they can be the sweet ending to any weeknight meal, especially if you rotate the type of fruit you use throughout the year.