#40 Plain Ol' Rhubarb Pie

Posted by Chrisi

My relationship with rhubarb has been tenuous at best. It’s my husband’s favorite pie so every Spring/early Summer I garner the courage to try again. In the past, my rhubarb pies have been undercooked and woody, too tart or the addition of berries over-powered the rhubarb flavor. This year, I may have stumbled upon something that resembles success! First, the rhubarb was purchased fresh from the Harrisonburg Farmer’s Market. Most stalks were a ¼ to ½” thick—not the 1” limp tree trunks that you usually find in the grocery store. Second, I macerated the rhubarb overnight by mixing it with sugar, orange juice and lemon zest. This really helped to soften the rhubarb but also created a lot of juice. Hence, my only complaint with this pie… it wasn’t quite thick enough. Maybe next year, I will actually achieve rhubarb pie perfection.

Recipe was modestly adapted from “All-Rhubarb Pie” in Pie by Ken Haedrich.

Crust: 9” double crust made with a 50:50 combo of butter and shortening.

·       6 cups rhubarb cut in 1/2” pieces (1/4 to 1/2” thick, fresh stalks)
·       1 1/4 cups of organic sugar, plus 2 additional tablespoons to add with the cornstarch
·       2 tablespoons of orange juice
·       Zest from half a lemon
·       Big pinch of sea salt
·       1/4+ teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg (1/4-1/3 of a nutmeg seed)
·       4 tablespoons of cornstarch (more was needed)
·       dollops of butter

Combine the rhubarb, 1 1/4 cup of sugar, orange juice, lemon zest, salt and nutmeg in a nonreactive, glass bowl. Macerate for several hours or in the frig overnight. Mix the cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of sugar with the macerated rhubarb. Poor rhubarb into the bottom crust and dot with butter. Position the top crust and assemble the pie. Brush the top crust with milk, pat with butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 400 °F for 30 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375 °F and bake for an additional 25 minutes. Allow the pie to completely cool before serving.


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