Please welcome guest poster, Adina Beck of Where is My Spoon to share her recipe for Rhubarb Meringue Pie with us today. I love rhubarb so my mouth is definitely watering! -Kate
Spring is finally here and that makes me so happy. Finally being able to spend more time outside the house, to take longer walks in the fields and woods around our village, to plant new flowers and herbs in the garden and in pots all around the house, the fresh green color everywhere…I think it’s obvious that spring is my favorite season. 🙂
And these are not the only things that make me happy every spring. The fresh produce that comes with the season is another reason. Asparagus, strawberries, elderflower, new potatoes are some of my favorite things, but my absolute highlight is the rhubarb. There is no other seasonal vegetable (yes, rhubarb is a vegetable) that gets so much attention from me in such a short period of time than rhubarb. My grandmother, who raised me, was not a keen baker, she never baked much, but her mother – my grand-grandmother did, and I remember her rhubarb meringue cake very vividly. It was always made on a tray, so enough for a lot of people and it was a very soft, tender, sweet cake. The rhubarb was placed on the batter, but it would sink inside it, reducing the sweetness of the cake a little bit. The cake was then topped with a very soft, and again, very sweet meringue, making the cake almost wet and very sticky. I was not a big sweets eater as a child, but I loved that cake.
I haven’t eaten that cake in almost 30 years now, and I will never forget it. But what I eat a lot of now is this rhubarb meringue pie. As much as I liked my grand-grandmother’s rhubarb cake, I think this pie about a hundred times better. And that is not an overstatement! I genuinely believe there is no better rhubarb pie out there. Just try it and you will see that I am right! There is such a perfect balance of taste and texture in it that makes this cake just unbelievable. A crumbly and not very sweet pastry covered with a tart yet sweet and creamy rhubarb filling and topped with sweet meringue, soft on the inside and crunchy on top. I am telling you, you will love every bite of it.
I discovered this recipe three years ago and I have to say that I rarely made any other rhubarb pie since. It is so good, that every time I want to try something else, I get almost fearful. I am afraid that the new dessert would not be as good as this pie and then I would have just wasted an occasion of eating this wonderful pie.
- 3½ cups chopped (750 g/ 27 oz) rhubarb
- ⅔ cups (130 g/ 4.6 oz )granulated sugar
- 1⅔ cups (200 g/ 7 oz) all-purpose flour
- ¼ cups (50 g/ 1.7 oz) granulated sugar
- ¼ cups + 1 teaspoon (65 g/ 2.3 oz) cold butter
- 1 large egg
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
- 2 packets vanilla pudding powder, 37 g/ 1.3 oz each (cooked pudding, not instant)
- 5 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 cups (500 ml) juice from the rhubarb-sugar mixture + some water or apple juice if necessary
- 3 egg whites, large
- ⅔ cups (130 g/ 4.6 oz) granulated sugar
- Clean and peel the rhubarb stalks. Cut them into slices, about 1 cm/ 0.4 inch thick. Place the rhubarb in a bowl, add ⅔ cups sugar, mix well and leave to stand until it releases plenty of juice. I leave it for about 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 390 degrees Fahrenheit (200 degrees Celsius)
- To make the dough place the flour, ¼ cups sugar, the cubed, cold butter, egg, baking powder and vanilla sugar in the food processor. Pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Turn it onto the working surface and knead very briefly to form a ball. Press the ball into a large circle, place this into the spring form (26 cm/ about 10 inch diameter) and press it with your fingers to cover the bottom of the pan. Press some more to form a rim about 4 cm/ 1.5 inch high.
- Strain and reserve the juice that the rhubarb released. You should have 2 cups rhubarb juice. If you don't have enough, fill the rest with water or some apple juice. Mix the vanilla pudding powder with the 5 tablespoons granulated sugar and enough of the rhubarb juice to form a paste.
- Place the rest of the juice into a small pan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, add the pudding powder-sugar mixture while whisking all the time, place back on the heat source and allow to bubble for a few seconds until the mixture thickens. Keep stirring all the time. Mix the pudding and the rhubarb pieces together and spread this mixture over the pastry in the spring form.
- Bake the pie for 35 minutes before topping it with the meringue.
- To make the meringue, place the egg whites into a clean bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until quite stiff. Add the last ⅔ cups granulated sugar gradually and continue whisking until the mixture becomes stiff and glossy. Spread the meringue on top of the pie using a spoon and continue baking for another 10 minutes. Leave to cool in the spring form for at least half an hour, then you can transfer the pie to a cake plate.
Please give this pie a try, I promise you, you will not be disappointed. Another bonus: it is sooo easy to make!
What is your favorite way to enjoy rhubarb?