Recipes Inspired by Colombia: Strawberry Maracuyá Pie


Song in video, "El Optimista," performed by Colombian guitarist Andrés Villamil

It's almost April in my home state of Washington, which means that Aaron's mom's rhubarb stalks will almost be ready for baking. Aaron's mom makes this irresistible strawberry rhubarb crisp; I can smell the sweetness of the strawberries as they melt together with the tartness of the rhubarb, and I can taste the first warm bite with that sugary and buttery oat topping.

But my seven month expat status was craving a little bit of Americana, so I set my sights on a classic fruit pie, despite being far away from any rhubarb. Thankfully there are plenty other tart fruits to choose from in Colombia (see my Guide to the Exotic Fruits of Colombia). I chose maracuyá (a green and wrinkly passionfruit popular in juice) as my rhubarb substitute and set to work on creating an expat pie spinoff. The result? The first of more Tasty-inspired cooking videos from Colombia to come!

 ¡Buen provecho! 


  • 2/3 cup plus 2 tbsp. softened butter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 4-5 tbsp. cold water


  • 3 cups sliced strawberries
  • 2/3 cup maracuyá pulp (or other available passionfruit) 
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 5 tbsp. water 


Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). 

For the crust, cut butter into into flour and salt until particles are the size of peas. Sprinkle in cold water 1 tbsp. at a time until dough cleans the sides of the bowl. Cut in half, roll into a ball, and chill for 30 minutes.

For the filling, combine strawberries, passionfruit pulp, and sugar in a small saucepan. Simmer for 2-3 minutes. While simmering, combine cornstarch and water until lumps disappear. Add cornstarch mixture to fruit and sugar and simmer another 2-3 minutes until thickened. Let cool. 

Roll out 1/2 of your chilled dough (I use plastic wrap on top and bottom for easy handling) to fit your pie dish; dough should extend past the edge at least an inch. Add the filling. Roll out the the other 1/2 of your dough into a long rectangle. Cut strips for lattice top. Weave the strips on top; then flute the edges. Brush with milk, and sprinkle with sugar. Cover edges with foil for the first 30 minutes in the oven; then remove. 

Bake for 40-50 minutes total, or until filling is bubbling, thick and the crust is golden brown. Let cool before slicing and serving. 


Ashley Peak

Teacher & traveler seeking bright sides and adventures. I recently left my position as a Title 1 middle school teacher in Spokane, WA for a position in Manizales, Colombia teaching English and Geography at a bilingual private school. I'm passionate about education in action, the power of literature, and traveling the world. Optimism Rampage is a place for me to reflect on the adventure. “Stuff your eyes with wonder. Live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds. see the world. It's more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask no guarantees, ask for no security, there never was such an animal. And if there were, it would be related to the great sloth which hangs upside down in a tree all day every day, sleeping its life away. To hell with that . Shake the tree and knock the great sloth down on his ass.” -Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451