Sunday, May 30, 2010

Rhubarb Berry Pie

The pie fanatic in me has been unleashed.

The idea of making pies has always scared me.

Cookies? No problem-o!

Cakes? Piece of cake (hardy-har-har).

Pies? Nope. I can never get the crust right, and no matter what I do, the filling is never consistent. Too thick, too watery...mostly it's too watery.

My grandmother grows rhubarb every year in her spring garden, and I've been fascinated by it. It's probably because my mom doesn't like rhubarb and therefore never made it for us. Granny gave me some rhubarb from her garden and I had every intention of making a pie, but I chickened out at the last minute and made a crisp. I have to say, that crisp made me become a fan of the rhubarb. Tart, yet definitely worth trying again.

Last week I was wandering through the PA Dutch Market in Cockeysville and found some beautiful, local rhubarb and strawberries. I decided to get some and make the classic strawberry rhubarb pie. It was a success. I have no idea what I did...other than follow the recipe. The slight success I had with that pie has made me want to try again. Since my grandmother and my grandfather are rhubarb fans and we were going up to their house for a Memorial Day cookout, I decided to try again. I couldn't find fresh rhubarb, but I did find it frozen. Right next to the frozen rhubarb were some frozen cherries and raspberries. I tossed 'em in my cart, picked up a box of Pillsbury "Just Unroll" Pie Crusts, and I was ready to make a pie. The verdict from the family...including my non-rhubarb loving was great. Holla! Here's my final recipe:

Rhubarb Cherry Berry Pie
Yield: 8 generous slices

1 10oz bag frozen rhubarb
2 10oz bag frozen raspberries
1 10oz bag frozen cherries
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbls corn starch
1 Tbls vanilla extract
1 Pillsbury "Just Unroll" Pie Crust, or your favorite pie dough recipe for 2 crusts
1 egg yolk
1 tsp water
additional sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a bowl, mix together the first 7 ingredients (rhubarb through vanilla extract) and set aside.

Unroll one pie crust, and use a rolling pin to stretch it out a bit more so it will leave a 1/2" - 1" overhang when placed in the bottom of a 9" deep dish pie plate. Once rolled out, line the deep dish pie plate with the dough.

Dump the frozen berry mixture into the lined pie plate.

Unroll the second crust, and use a rolling pin to stretch it out a bit more to cover the top. Feel free to make a lattice crust or use mini cookie cutters to punch out portions of the dough (like this). Lay the dough over the frozen berry mixture and crimp the edges to seal.

Beat the egg yolk with the tsp of water. Brush over the crust and sprinkle with sugar.

Place the pie in the pre-heated oven and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350, place a pie shield or foil over the crimped edges, and bake for 1 hour longer or until filling is bubbling and crust is golden brown.

Let cool and enjoy!

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