July 19, 2013

Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Vegan Strawberry Rhubarb Pie | Tried & Twisted

My first introduction to rhubarb was at the scenic home of a South African professor with a classy accent. He welcomed our writing club to his countryside home, complete with honey bees, nature walk through the forest, and flower-covered gazebo. While we worked, he supplied scones, pie, and coffee from a real French press. He was a one of the really good professors.

So when he handed me a strawberry pie that appeared to contain some kind of celery, I wanted to prove myself sophisticated, worldly, and knowledgable and not reveal my ignorance as to why anyone would put a vegetable in a fruit pie. Maybe it was a South African tradition, I thought.

What is rhubarb? 
Luckily, someone else mentioned that the mysterious veggie was called rhubarb. Off to wikipedia! I learned that, yes, rhubarb has many striking similarities to celery, but it has a tart taste which is a natural fit for a fruit pie. It is a popular plant used in English cooking, but it's popular in America too.

Rhubarb can be prepared a great many different ways to create a good strawberry rhubarb pie; the best method is often debated. The stalks contain a lot of moisture so some people will boil or steam the rhubarb before using it in a pie to pre-release the moisture.

Slice of Strawberry Rhubarb Pie that's Dairy-Free and Vegan | Tried & Twisted

Since I'm still a novice as to what a "proper" strawberry rhubarb pie should taste like, I fairly closely followed this dairy-free, vegan recipe for strawberry rhubarb pie for my first attempt last year. My Uncle loved it so much, he immediately proclaimed it was exactly like his Mom's recipe. I didn't have the heart to tell him it was vegan! gasp!

So that is how I came to know and love strawberry rhubarb pie. Here's the recipe, altered from Vegan Baking's recipe. Enjoy the sweet soft tartness of rhubarb in a pie.

Strawberry rhubarb pie filling | Tried & Twisted

Hmmm...now I'm craving coffee from a French press to go with a slice of pie.

Dairy-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
1/2 cup cold soy margarine
8 oz cold dairy free cream cheese
< 1/3 cup ice cold water


5 cups rhubarb, cut into 1-inch pieces
5 cups strawberry, stem removed and quartered
1 cup sugar + 1 tsp sugar
5 - 6 Tbsp flour
1 tsp orange extract
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch salt

1. Prepare dairy-free pie dough according to instructions, letting it chill in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight. Store-bought dough could be used instead, if desired.
2. Preheat oven to 375°F and place a baking sheet in the oven. Roll out pie dough and crimp to fit a 9-inch pie pan. Roll out top for the pie and store flat on a plate or between two sheets of saran wrap. Return pie pan and top of pie to fridge while preparing other ingredients.
Tip: Baking sheet will catch escaping juices from pie while baking and some theorize that this method helps to brown the bottom crust more evenly.
3. Wash, core, and chop strawberries and rhubarb stalks into 1-inch pieces. Toss together in a medium mixing bowl with 1 cup of sugar, 5 Tbsp flour, orange extract, vanilla extract, and salt until well combined.
Tip: If the mixture is especially wet (some fruit are juicier than others), add one more tablespoon of flour.
4. Fill pie shell with strawberry rhubarb mixture.
5. Place top layer of pie overtop of filling, cut off excess from the edges, and crimp edges of pie shell together. Cut slits into the top of the pie shell for steam to escape. Dust the top of the pie with 1 tsp of sugar.  Cover loosely with aluminum foil.
6. Place pie in oven on top of baking sheet and bake for 1 hour 15 - 20 minutes. After the first 30 minutes, remove aluminum foil from top of pie to allow it to fully brown.
7. Remove pie on baking sheet and let pie cool on a wire rack for 2 - 4 hours to allow the inside filling to set up.
Enjoy!

Dairy-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Pie | Tried & Twisted

Rating of Difficulty: 2 out of 5. Mixing sugar and flour with fruit and baking a pie is not all that hard. Baking a perfect pie--now that's a little trickier. There's a lot of theories on how to create the perfect pie dough and the perfect pie. I've shared the tips I know which will hopefully make your pie baking experience easier, but sometimes accidents happen. Even the most skilled baker sometimes has a crack in the crust or burnt edges. If this happens, don't sweat it! Your pie will still taste delicious, and you now have the excuse to make more pie -- practice makes perfect!

Do you have any special tricks for preparing rhubarb? What's your favorite tip to avoid a soggy pie?
What other pies do you like to make with vegan pie dough? Please share away in the comments!

Linking at:
Flaunt it Friday, Frugal Friday, Weekend Re-Treat Link Party, The Pin Junkie, Wildly Original, Nifty Thrifty Sunday, DIY Sunday Showcase, Sugar and Slice Sunday Party,  Monday Funday, Frugal Crafty Home, Weekend Wrap-Up, Give Me the Goods, Your Great Idea, Strut Your Stuff, Pin it Monday,

14 comments:

  1. Sounds amazing! You could always nab the french press from my registry, bring the pie, and I'll make the coffee! ;)

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  2. Oh you're getting a French press? You'll love it!

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  3. I don't think I've ever tried strawberry rhubarb pie before, but it looks amazing!
    Kelly @ View Along the Way

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    1. Oh it's so sweet and just a little bit tart! Hope you enjoy, Kelly!

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  4. Finally... I know what rhubarb is! The pie looks delicious! Thanks for sharing with us this week at Monday Funday!

    Take care,

    Trish

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    1. My pleasure! Thank you for stopping by, Trish!

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  5. This pie looks wonderful! I have never baked with rhubarb and in fact, have only eaten it once. This makes me want to try it again!

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    1. It was such a novelty to me too. Glad to hear I'm not the only one!

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  6. Everything is better when it's associated with a good memory, isn't it? The pie looks delicious!! Thanks for linking up to Give Me the Goods Monday!!

    Rachel @ Maison de Pax

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    1. I agree! So much of cooking is an emotional connection. I bake for the one's I love, I enjoy the time together, and then I get to keep the memory forever. Thanks for stopping by, Rachel!

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  7. I've never tried rhubarb before and I need to. It's funny how you thought it may be some African fruit. Being African, I always think the opposite...most encounters are American to be me!

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    1. Rhubarb is such a forgotten vegetable! Now, I don't feel so bad for not knowing what it was. That is funny that we both were wrong about the origins of rhubarb. I wonder if the English even think of it as their classic dish.

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  8. i've never had rhubarb before. But I when I see it I always think to myself, "it's red celery!" This looks like a wonderful pie. Pinning!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Julie, and thanks for the pin!

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