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Published: Wednesday, April 17, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Spring means it's rhubarb pie time

Judyrae Kruse is taking some well-earned time off. Here is an encore column from April 2009.
While rhubarb isn't anywhere near as terrifyingly prolific as, say, zucchini (but then, what is?), a plant or two can still put out a steady sturdy supply.
Which, of course, makes a nice stack of tried-and-true recipes a handy dandy thing to have ready and waiting.
So here we go, starting with this delightful, held-over-from-last-rhubarb-season letter from Arlington cook Gloria Abbenhouse.
"I am so grateful to Caroline Oberg for asking for a rhubarb custard pie recipe,'' she writes.
"First, I went to some old cookbooks, but it was not there. I did find the sour cream raisin pie that goes with Christmas, though.
"So, on to the 3-by-5 recipe boxes, and there it was. The penciled recipe was almost rubbed off, but the back side had a drawing of a limbless being, the art of one of our four, the youngest of whom is now 47.
"Which of them, up on a chair enhancing the recipe, I no longer remember, but I was delighted for the find, nevertheless.''
And another holdover comes to us courtesy of Peggy Labuhn of Mukilteo, who tells us, "In the June 27 Forum, your column had a reader looking for a rhubarb custard pie recipe.
"This one is from my grandmother in Michigan, and it's been shared with all of my relatives who like rhubarb pie.''
Found-it rhubarb custard pie
  • 2 cups 1/2-inch pieces rhubarb
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 3 egg yolks (save 2 of the whites for the meringue)
  • 1 8-inch pie shell, baked
  • Meringue (recipe follows)

In a double-boiler, cook the rhubarb with the sugar and cornstarch, then add butter. Beat the egg yolks, add the rhubarb mixture, mix well and return to the double-boiler. Cook, stirring, until very thick. Remove from heat and spoon rhubarb mixture into the pie shell.
Prepare the meringue, spread over the rhubarb, touching meringue to the crust to prevent it from shrinking.
Bake at 300 degrees for 15 minutes.
Makes one 8-inch pie.
Meringue
In a mixing bowl, beat 2 egg whites with 1/2 cup sugar until stiff.
Michigan grandmother's rhubarb custard pie
  • 1 8-inch pie shell, unbaked
  • About 3 cups cut-up rhubarb
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 whole egg plus 2 egg yolks (save the whites for the meringue)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Meringue (recipe follows)
Fill the crust with the rhubarb. In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar, flour, whole egg and egg yolks, salt and nutmeg, mixing well; pour over the rhubarb. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the meringue, spread over the baked pie and bake 12 minutes more, until the meringue starts to brown.
Makes one 8-inch pie.
Meringue
In a mixing bowl, beat the 2 reserved egg whites with 1 teaspoon cream of tartar on high speed of electric mixer until stiff peaks form; beat in 1 tablespoon sugar.
Story tags » Cooking

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