Tag Archives: pie

The Dessert Lottery: Winter Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Have you ever seen such a beautiful list?

With Thanksgiving complete and Christmas hot on its heels, I have a lot to be thankful for. This morning though, this sunny Seattle morning the day after Thanksgiving, the thing I am MOST thankful for is the fact that my Mom, aka Marnie Poppins, aka Expert Pie Maker Extraordinaire, has decided that her pies need work and this week (while visiting from Boston) is the week to tackle it. Have you ever heard of anything so awesome? So while I’m sitting here in my bathrobe writing this post, she’s off to the grocery store to pick up ingredients for FIVE days of back-to-back pies. Like I said, I’ve got a lot to be thankful for.

We’re already two pies into the week having brought a Pumpkin and Strawberry-Rhubarb to Thanksgiving Dinner last night. Lucky for me these didn’t turn out exactly like she wanted…so now it’s time for the Pie Jackpot. That said, I actually loved the Strawberry-Rhubarb and via using frozen rhubarb and frozen strawberries it becomes a wonderful taste of summer in the middle of winter. Make it when you’re craving something sweet, yet tart…just don’t make it too perfectly, or you won’t get a week of pies baked just for you by your loving Mama.

Winter Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

  1. Prepare Flaky Pastry Pie Dough
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 425 and place rack in the middle of the oven.
  3. Roll half the dough into a 13-inch round, fit into a 9-inch glass pie dish. Leave the overhanging dough as is since you’ll be making a lattice top as pictured here. Set in refrigerator to chill.
  4. Meanwhile take 5 cups of frozen rhubarb, pre-cut into 1″ pieces.
  5. Add to that 2 cups frozen strawberries.
  6. Combine with 1 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup cornstarch, 1/4 teaspoon salt
  7. Mix well and allow to stand for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Because you’re using frozen fruit you’ll see there is a fair amount of liquid in the bottom of the bowl as it thaws. This is okay.
  8. After fifteen minutes scoop out the fruit with a slotted spoon and put into the prepared pie crust. Discard the liquid (probably about 1 cup). Dot with 2 TB unsalted butter cut into small pieces.
  9. Brush the overhanging edge of the bottom crust with cold water. Cover with the lattice, then seal the edge, trim, and crimp or flute.
  10. Lightly brush the top with milk or cream.
  11. Sprinkle with 2 tsp sugar.
  12. Bake 10 minutes at 425, then reduce to 350 and bake another 30-40 minutes until thick juices bubble through the vents.
  13. Let cool completely before serving.


Filed under Desserts, Entertaining

Perfect New England Pumpkin Pie

There’s an age old expression, “You can take the girl out of the East Coast, but you can’t take the East Coast out of the girl.”*

Having lived in Seattle for the last five years there is lots that I love about it here. I love the mountains, I love the job market, I love the people, I love the polar fleece (except at nice restaurants…why on earth do NW folks think that’s okay??). But there are times when I miss the East Coast and all its straightforwardness, its bluntness, its unapologetic attitude, and its history. As much as I think I’ve become a “west coaster” I recently had someone interrupt me mid-conversation to ask where I’m from. When I said, “East Coast….well, outside of Boston,” they gave that all-knowing little exhale of breath and said, almost sympathetically, “that explains it.”

I also miss the food. If you’re a regular reader of Shut Up and Cook you’ll know there are just certain things you can’t get out in Seattle like you can back East. There are no fried clams, no chicken finger subs (no good subs for that matter period), no good duck choo chee, and no good chicken pies.

So this Monday night, as the days get darker earlier, and the wind whips around outside,  I found myself missing the East Coast just a little bit more than usual. And nothing is more East Coast than good ‘ol fashioned Perfect New England Pumpkin Pie.

If you’re afraid of making pies…don’t be. They aren’t as hard as you think they are, and people will be so impressed you made a pie from scratch you’ll already have bonus points at the outset. Plus…pie comes at the end of dinner…which usually means the end of a wine bottle (or three)…so everything tastes good. Particularly a pumpkin, ginger, cinnamon custard baked in a perfectly flaky, buttery crust. The secret ingredient here is just a touch of maple syrup…and it does make a difference.

Make this when you’re missing those up tight-East Coasters, their pearls, and their judgment. Because admit it, sometimes you do.

Perfect New England Pumpkin Pie

FLAKY PASTRY (from my Grandmother’s kitchen on Cape Cod)

Makes 2 doughs, top and bottom, enough for 4 pumpkin pies

4 C Flour

1 3/4 C Shortening

1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

1/2 C ice cold water

1 Tbsp sugar

2 Tsp salt

1 Egg

Mix shortening and dry ingredients together.  In small bowl, beat water, egg and vinegar together. Add to dry

“goop”  (her words, not mine). Blend w/fork till everything is moistened.

Pie Dough

Pie Dough

W/ hands, mold dough into 4 balls.

Wrap in good old fashioned wax paper and chill 15 minutes or more.

Roll out for crust and proceed with appropriate pie making precautions.

PUMPKIN PIE (adapted from the Butt’ry Shelf Cookbook, Mary Mason Campbell 1968)

Makes enough for 1 pumpkin pie

Have ready an unbaked 9″ pastry shell w/ high crimped edges.

Mix in bowl:

1 1/2 C pumpkin cooked or canned (be sure to get the unseasoned, unflavored kind if you go the canned route)

1/3 C brown sugar

1/4 C white sugar

1 TB Vermont Maple Syrup, no other

1/2 Tsp salt

1 1/2 Tsp ginger powder

1 Tsp cinnamon

1/2 Tsp grated nutmeg

1/2 Tsp powdered cloves

3 eggs, slightly beaten

1/ 1/2 C cream

Pie Filling

Pie Filling

Pour into prepared pie shell. Bake on one level up from botton rack in hot oven (400) 50-60 minutes until knife point inserted comes out clean. At about 20 minutes, if necessary, add a bit of foil around the crust so it doesn’t brown too much. You can pull the foil off to finish the crust to a nice golden brown in the last ten minutes.

Enjoy with black coffee and a bit of homemade whipped cream flavored with nutmeg.

Pumpkin Pie

Voila! (Sorry the picture is crappy...I promise it was beautiful in person)

*Okay…perhaps it’s more like a 5-minute old expression, but it’s true.


Filed under Desserts, Seasonal Cooking