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Rhubarb Pie with Recipe

Rhubarb Pie, Photo by Diane and Doug Russell
Rhubarb Pie, Photo by Diane and Doug Russell

Rhubarb Pie made with homegrown rhubarb. Sweet, tangy, unmistakably bold flavor that shouts “Spring!”

I really enjoy baking pies made with the rhubarb we grow in our organic urban garden. Last year, I made my traditional Rhubarb Pie, as well as a Rhubarb Custard Pie, Blueberry Rhubarb Pie and Strawberry Rhubarb Pie. This year? Well, we’ll see how far the rhubarb supply goes!

A pie made with rhubarb and sweetened just right is lovely and satisfying. Here’s the extremely simple recipe that transforms rhubarb into a fantastic Rhubarb Pie.

Rhubarb Pie Recipe

Ingredients:
4 cups of chopped rhubarb
3/4 cup sugar
3 Tablespoons corn starch
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Method:
Mix ingredients well in a large bowl.
Fill a pastry shell, then fit top crust.
Seal and pinch around the edge to form crust.

Bake at 400F for about 50-60 minutes.

Enjoy!

Rhubarb– at last!

Rhubarb Plant

This has been a cold, wet, rainy spring in Michigan. We have had several frost or near frosts unexpectedly late in the season. The weather has slowed down the growing season too; I’ve heard estimates of spring being one to three weeks behind. I don’t know if those dates scientifically accurate in any way, but it sure feels about right. We have been wearing sweaters more this May than in the previous Mays that come to mind.

But now finally it’s time for rhubarb.

Rhubarb is an extra special plant that grows well in our climate. It’s big and weird, not quite a fruit, not quite a vegetable, but the green to red stalks are edible and delicious nonetheless. It’s also known as “pie plant”, which seems the nicest name of all.

Rhubarb is also the only “crop” that we grow enough of in our urban garden to offer pies for customers. The demand nearly outweighed the supply last year, so I am prepared to purchase locally grown rhubarb to supplement what I can pick and meet the demand for pies. I’m predicting that ingredients for about a dozen pies will come from our gardens, and that’s very exciting.

Vanilla Bean Peach Pie

Vanilla Bean Peach Pie, Photo by Diane and Doug Russell
Vanilla Bean Peach Pie, Photo by Diane and Doug Russell

Pie of the Week for April 28 will be Vanilla Bean Peach Pie. This pie is one of my most popular pie flavors– Peach– dressed up with a fresh vanilla bean mixed in the filling. Flecks of vanilla bean and lemon zest replace the traditional cinnamon in this special peach pie. Simply delicious!

Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry Crust

Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry Crust; Photo by Diane & Doug Russell
Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry Crust; Photo by Diane & Doug Russell

This pie is my daughter’s very favorite, and since she’s coming home this week for a visit, I’ll be making one for her. I’m also offering Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry Crust as Pie of the Week.

When I first heard of this pie crust, I knew I had to try it. Within 24 hours, my family was sampling the finished pie. They adored the Lemon Pastry Crust, claiming it was good enough to eat on its own. (I’m known to bake crust scraps, should there be any, as instant cookies to snack on!)

The recipe is no more difficult than any pie crust.

Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry Crust

Ingredients:

For the Pastry:
2 cups flour
1/2 cup of powdered sugar
4.5 ounces of butter, cut into cubes
Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
1 egg, beaten (reserve 1 Tbsp)

For the Pie Filling:
4 cups (about 1 pound) blueberries
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp lemon juice
3 Tbsp cornstarch

Method:
To make the pastry, combine the flour and powdered sugar into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and lemon zest, and cut in with a pastry cutter to make a fine crumbly mixture.

Drizzle in the beaten egg (reserve 1 Tbsp) and about 1 tablespoon of cold water, then gently work together with a fork until you have a ball of dough. If you have time, you can wrap and chill the dough for about 30 minutes.

Then roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to line the pie pan and another to form the top crust.

Fill the bottom crust with the blueberry filling and then top with the remaining pastry.

Brush over the surface of the pie with the reserved egg. Make several slits in the top crust to vent. Then place the pie in the preheated 400F oven for about 30-35 minutes, or until the top is golden and crispy.

Pi cutter to add to the collection

I received a very exciting package in the mail today — all the way from the Netherlands!

Pi Cutter

This year, I made quite a few special Pi Day Pies with hand-made Pi’s on top. Next year I want to make even better looking Pi’s. Jim helped me find this 3-D printed Pi cutter on Etsy, made by Printmeneer in the Netherlands. It arrived quickly, and it’s a great shape.

I can’t wait to use it next Pi Day for making even fancier pies!

Pie Bites in Blueberry and Peach

I baked these Blueberry and Peach Pie Bites today for a special order. I thought they came out very cute!

Blueberry and Peach Pie Bite Single Serving Pies

Pie Bites are single serving treats that work well for parties and events. The are tidy, cute, and delicious. People can eat them with their fingers!

I ordered new boxes from BRP Box Shop to use with Pie Bites. These are the right size to hold 16 Pie Bites and the display window is pretty fancy!

I will be offering Pie Bites beginning this spring!

Coconut Cream Pie Recipe

Coconut Cream Pie
Coconut Cream Pie

Let me say first that this Coconut Cream Pie is completely worth the effort! There maybe be short cuts or substitutes for homemade pudding pie filling, but there’s nothing quite like the real thing.

Don’t let the difficulty of homemade pudding worry you, if that sort of thing does. Like all things worth doing, this pie takes a little patience and practice, but again it’s fantastic! When making this Coconut Cream Pie recipe, focus on this one thing for 20 minutes, and you’ll have a pie you’ll be very pleased with.


Coconut Cream Pie

Ingredients:
1 cup coconut milk
2 cups half-and-half
2 eggs
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup flaked coconut, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 baked pastry shell

Method:
1. In a medium saucepan, combine the coconut milk, half-and-half, eggs, sugar, flour and salt. Stir until smooth.
2. Slowly bring the mixture to a boil over low heat, stirring constantly. Use a whisk or a rubber spatula to keep the mixture moving as it heats.
3. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and 3/4 cup of the coconut (not toasted).
4. Pour pudding into the pie shell and chill for 2 to 4 hours.
5. Meanwhile, toast the remaining 1/4 cup of coconut. Spread it evenly on an ungreased cooking sheet and bak in a 350F oven for 5 to 7 minutes or until golden brown. Stir occasionally. Be attentive: coconut will brown quickly.
6. Sprinkle toasted coconut over the top before serving. Or add whipped cream or whipped topping and toasted coconut both, if you prefer.

Note: You can also toast all of the coconut in this recipe, before assembling the ingredients. I prefer un-toasted coconut inside the filling.