Being rhubarb season means that I'm always on the hunt for new recipes to try. I know we have our favorites, but we don't want to "get sick of it", so to speak. This weekend I made a rhubarb custard pie - making a variation on a recipe I found in Saveur and using my old stand by flaky crust recipe. It is SO GOOD. Mild, tangy, not too sweet, not too tart, crispy crust with soft custard and bits of rhubarb. Just great. I have a feeling I'll be making this a few more times this season!
::Rhubarb Custard Filling::
2 cups thinly chopped fresh rhubarb
1 1/4 cups turbinado sugar
seeds from 1/2 a scraped vanilla bean (or 1 tsp good vanilla extract)
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
4 large eggs
1 Tbsp cream
Make your pastry crust (see below).
Toss the chopped rhubarb into bowl with 1 cup of the sugar. Let it sit until the rhubarb releases its juices - an hour or so will be about right. Strain the rhubarb - save the juice/liquid too.
For the custard beat the eggs with the cream and 1/4 cup remaining sugar, stir in the vanilla and dried spices.
Stir in the rhubarb juice that you strained.
Sprinkle the rhubarb slices into the pie crust, pour over the custard mixture.
Bake at 350ºF until it is set but not overcooked - about 30-40 minutes. Let cool & slice!
::Pâte Brisée - AKA flaky pie crust::
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 tsp sugar (for sweet dish, omit for savory like quiche)
4 oz. COLD unsalted butter
3 to 6 tsp of ice water
Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl.
Cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter (or pulse in food processor) until it resembles course meal.
Add the ice water a bit at a time, mixing as you go until the mixture just starts to come together.
Gently roll into a ball (don't knead).
Wrap it up, flatten into 1" thick disc and put into the fridge for 20+ minutes to chill.
Roll the dough out gently and then press into your lightly buttered pie plate, crimping edges.
This does not need to be pre-baked, just add your filling and bake. This works for any recipe that needs a flaky crust. Makes one 9" pie crust.
This is really good with some freshly whipped cream or vanilla bean ice cream. YUM.