Thursday, January 23, 2014

STRAWBERRY RHUBARB PIE with CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST

January 23 is National Pie Day.. but it's also National Rhubarb Pie Day. I love Strawberry Rhubarb Pie (actually celebrated on June 9), but I usually make it in the summer. However, here in Northern California, we grow strawberries and rhubarb all year round -- Strawberry Fields Forever! Of course I make this pie with my Chocolate Cookie Crust.

A little info on rhubarb: In culinary use, fresh raw petioles (leaf stalks) are crisp (similar to celery) with a strong, tart taste. Most commonly, the plant's leaf stalks are cooked with sugar and used in pies and other desserts. Rhubarb is usually considered a vegetable. In the United States, however, a New York court decided in 1947 that since it was used in the United States as a fruit, it counted as a fruit for the purposes of regulations and duties. And, a warning: Do not eat or use the leaves.

The following recipe is easy and great. Most people do a two crust pie.. the top crust being a lattice; however, I don't think that works with a chocolate crust.  As always, it's your choice! Enjoy and celebrate the day!

STRAWBERRY RHUBARB PIE WITH CHOCOLATE COOKIE CRUST

Chocolate Cookie Crust
Ingredients 
2 cups chocolate wafers
6 Tbsp sweet butter (or salted if you're inclined), melted

Directions 
Melt butter. Put chocolate wafers in plastic bag and crush with spoon or rolling pin. Should be pea-size. Combine melted butter and ground chocolate wafers. Press ingredients into 9 inch buttered pie pan--bottom and up the sides. Bake for 10 minutes-325. Let cool.  

Filling
2 cups rhubarb stalks, chopped into cubes (or thinly sliced
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 tsp orange zest
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup flour
3 cups strawberries, cleaned, hulled, quartered  (or thinly sliced)

Directions
Combine rhubarb, sugar, orange zest, nutmeg, cinnamon, flour, and strawberries in a bowl and toss well. Spread into prepared crust and bake for 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees or until rhubarb is tender and filling is bubbly.

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