Saturday, August 20, 2011

Rhubarb Custard Pie - or, my little oasis of Heaven

Since my love of rhubarb knows no bounds, I have to share this recipe which I found in the depths of my mother's 1960 recipe box, along with about 50 other recipes that involve rhubarb.  
I love this recipe because #1 - it's really pretty simple to make (especially with the invention of the pre-made Pillsbury pie crusts) and #2 - the custard/rhubarb combination is heavenly.  Rhubarb by itself is pretty sour, and generally you need to add a good amount of sugar.  This recipe however, isn't too sicky sweet - it's perfection!

So, here is a picture of the recipe that I was facing.  I'm going to pare it down for you and make it less complicated than what you see here.  

Your list of ingredients:

1 Pillsbury Pie crust
3 large eggs
1 1/3 cup sugar
7 TB cornstarch
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups skim milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 lb rhubarb, diced
1/4 cp water
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Here we go!
1.  Prepare the pie crust according to the package directions.  I used a metal pie pan, but any will do.  Bake it at 350 for about 10-15 minutes until it's golden.  Cool completely on a rack.

2.  Now for the Custard (not hard!)
      Separate the eggs (save the whites for the meringue at the end).  Place the yolks into a saucepan.  With a wire whisk, beat 1/2 cup of the sugar, 4 TB of the cornstarch, and the salt into the egg yolks until smooth.  Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens and it comes to a boil - which will be about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.  Pour on top of your cooled pie crust and set it aside.

3.  Now on the the rhubarb filling:
     In a 2 quart saucepan, heat the diced rhubarb and 1/4 cup of water over medium heat and bring to a boil.  Cook for 5 minutes.  In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of sugar and the remaining 3 TB of cornstarch.  Stir into the rhubarb and heat again to boiling.  Cook, stirring constantly until the rhubarb is just tender and the mixture is thick and clear.  Pour over the custard which is sitting patiently on top of your pie crust.  Now onto the meringue topping!

*We are taking a little pause here*  I just had to show you all this container of Cream of Tartar.  This is what I found in my mother's cupboard - I think it's got to be from the 1960's - does cream of tartar ever go bad???  Well - I used it!  and I'm still alive - pie turned out wonderful - so, I'm guessing not.  ha.

4.  Now to make the meringue topping.  
     Heat your oven to 350 degrees.  Add cream of tartar to your egg whites in a large bowl.  Beat them on high until stiff peaks begin to form.  Beat in the remaining 1/3 cup of sugar.  Spoon the meringue over the filling and bake for 12-15 minutes until browned.

Grab a hot cup of coffee, a huge slice of your pie and ENJOY!  (Did I tell you I just LOVE pie?!)  

4 comments: said...

Oh my, does that look good! Thanks for sharing the recipe ~ think I'm gonna have to give it a try. Don't know if it'll be as good as yours though, you know since I'm missing 40-year old cream of tartar ~ ha!


RetroLeeTX said...

Seriously! I didn't know Cream of Tartar lasted that long! The tin is cute tho ;)

Elsita said...

Great great blog, I loved!

This is mine

FunkyFeisty said...

That looks great! can you send me one?

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