Monday, May 30, 2011

A Pie in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush... Or Something Like That...

We had company for dinner last night and lo' I found I had a pound of rhubarb in the fridge.  It's hard for me to convey why I love rhubarb so much.  For one, after robins and crocuses, it's the first sign Spring is finally here.  Also, one of my earliest memories is of my Dad showing me the rhubarb plant in our side yard and giving me a taste of the sour stalk.  I'd pay money for a picture of my face that day...  Plus, it's a vegetable that you can put in a pie!  Nom!  This is a recipe I got off the Internet years ago and have nearly adulterated beyond recognition.  I've been on a diet lately (down 28 pounds, thank you very much!) so I don't know if this was so good because I've been off sugar for so long, or if it really is far and away the best pie ever invented, but I'm going for the second explanation...  This particular crust is a storebought abomination (and by abomination I mean full of chemicals, fat, and calories and totally worth it) but I do have a very good homemade crust I'll share one of these days.  (It's got cream cheese.  Dude.) Anyhoo, here's the original.  It came from a now-defunct website called and was demurely titled...

Rhubarb and Strawberry Pie VI

4 C rhubarb-sliced into 1/2 in. chunks.
1 1/2 C strawberries, sliced
2/3 C flour
1 1/2 C sugar
1 1/2 t cinnamon
2 t butter
1 (9in.) double pie crust
extra sugar
Opt. 1 C sliced apples may be added and raspberries may be subbed for the strawberries

  • Combine fruit in a bowl.  Add sugar, flour, and cinnamon and stir into fruit.  Pour into unbaked pie crust and top with butter.  
  • Make lattice top crust if desired, or a regular plain top crust.  Brush crust with milk and sprinkle with a light dusting of sugar.
  • Bake at 375 degrees for about 35-40 minutes, or until juices bubble up and appear thickened.
Yield: 8 servings (Or if you're me, 1 maybe 2...)


My substitutions/additions:
  • 1 small fuji apple, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 pt raspberries
  • 1 Cup sliced strawberries
  • I have also used blackberries and/or blueberries, though not in this pie.
  • I did not do the milk wash.  I was running short on time, and I really didn't care if it had a glaze or not.


With most fruit pies, you let the sugar sit on the fruit for a while to form a sort of gel.  This time, I didn't have a lot of time for the fruit to sit, so I let it sit while I got the crusts ready and the oven finished warming (5-10 minutes).  When I poured the filling into the crust, there was still a lot of loose flour and sugar mixture and I was a little worried.  It absolutely made no difference.  If anything, it was slightly less messy, but the taste was still fantastic.

This makes 1 deep-dish pie, or with an extra apple, 2 regular pies.


It is tart and sweet and so very, very good.  Serving it with ice cream is a must, though.  It cuts through some of the tartness.  I sent our guests home with pie and no ice cream and also never having had rhubarb pie before...  I am wondering what they thought of it...  But for us, who know the secret of the vanilla ice cream, this here pie's a keeper!

*Side note about rhubarb: If you don't already know, the leafy part of rhubarb is poisonous.  Most grocery stores and farmer's markets will have the greens stripped off already, but if you have some growing in your yard or get some from a friend, please only eat the stalk!

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