Sunday, May 20, 2012

Rhubarb Custard Pie

If you're like me and can't resist buying armloads of the ruby red rhubarb now appearing at the farmer's market, you've also embarked on a recipe search to use it before the stalks wilt in the refrigerator, along with your ambitious springtime baking intentions.

A search of the vintage recipe cards in my collection revealed dozens of rhubarb recipes-- this was a popular dessert vegetable, indeed.  The creative desserts include everything from rhubarb bread to rhubarb tapioca -- both subjects of a future post.  But what captured my attention last week was one for rhubarb custard pie.

This is a delicious custard-y pie -- but you must delay gratification for its best flavor emerges the day after it has been baked.  Out of the oven, the egg-y custard flavor dominates.  I like this a lot, but it's not to everyone's taste.  The next day, however, the rhubarb forms a lovely layer and the custard is rich and smooth.

This is a very quick and easy recipe.  Simply beat the eggs, sugar, flour and butter together.  Be careful not to let the mixture sit without beating, as the sugar will "cook" the eggs.


Beat in the whole milk.


Meantime, place the diced rhubarb into an unbaked 9-inch pie crust. Actually, do this step first.


Pour the custard mixture over the rhubarb. Don't worry if it seems to liquid-y.  It will firm up in the oven.


And, voila!  Not a gorgeous pie, but a delicious one.




13 comments:

  1. I wish I had read this before making jam with my two pounds of rhubarb today! Well, it will give me something to look forward to next weekend.

    And I appreciate your warning about combining the eggs and sugar. Not everyone is aware of that fact and I learned the hard way. I once ruined a very large recipe of creme brulee for that very reason. Object lesson learned!

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    1. Actually, Tug's Girl, I think you did the right thing with your rhubarb. Most other recipes simply disguise rhubarb, i.e., just use it as a changeable ingredient. You captured the true essence of it. (Having just made rhubarb bread, I know of what I speak. Could have easily been zucchini bread! And I think many of us, me included, have learned the egg-sugar lesson the hard way ; (

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  2. Replies
    1. It was! I had two slices. Well, maybe three!

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  3. I want some right now!! Looks easy and delicious! I didn't know that about eggs and sugar, either.
    Thanks for the tip.

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    1. Kevel, it was remarkably easy, after dicing the rhubarb and making the crust (which did not come out well, but I at least I figured out why!).

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  4. This sounds quite fabulous. Haven't had a rhubarb dessert in years.

    Sharon
    ourtheoryonlife.blogspot.com

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    1. It really was good, Sharon. I'm about to post a rhubarb bread recipe I made and am frantically searching for my rhubarb tapioca pudding recipe -- the fresh rhubarb I bought for it has very short shelf life!

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  5. Going to try this pie ~~ Looks delicious - I have not even used my rhubarb yet.

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    1. Great, Claudia -- It's really, really good. Really! Rhubarb is finished here at the Brooklyn farmer's markets and I'm sad that I must wait an entire year to make this again.

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  6. Oh my golly! As I just started browsing your delicious baked goodies here, I can't help but to be envious in your baking skills. Every recipe you're making looks very, very yummy! I hope you'll continue to inspire bakers wannabe like me. :)

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  7. The pie casin is burnt and the cake is not even set, even though I followed the hard to read recipe card. So I gave up and threw it out. Then I remember I have a similar strawberry pie, used that recipe which ask for 3/4 cups of cream and 2 eggs and that worked.

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    1. Grrrr -- So sorry it didn't work out for you. I make everything on my blog just once (so tested, but only once, so not ideal). I can't imagine why it didn't set, but I feel your pain as I've made many failed recipes. Glad that you had an alternative.

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