Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Radishes and Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

I thinned the radish bed and was surprised to see how big the radish babies had gotten.

Then I noticed that the rhubarb in my garden had produced enough stems to make something.

Then I picked up a delicious bounty from the farmer's market that included fresh asparagus and smoked bacon.

So I called my parents and offered to make dinner for them.
First, the radishes. Because they were so young, they were only a little hot. They were crisp and lovely with a pinch of salt. Dad ate most of them.

Then, the quiche. Mom loves quiche but dad is usually kind of *eh* about it. They both enjoyed it; how can you go wrong with fresh eggs, bacon, asparagus, and Jarlsberg cheese? I used a premade pie crust because it was easy. Making quiche is EASY.

Asparagus, Swiss and Bacon Quiche

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • 1 and 1/4 c half and half
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 c shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 c steamed asparagus (I usually use fresh but I was cooking for my parents and they like things a little more cooked
  • 6 slices of bacon, fried and broken into small pieces. (You don't need salt because of the bacon)
  • premade pie shell
Separate one egg and whisk the white until frothy. Set aside. Whisk yolk, the other eggs, and half-and-half in a separate medium bowl. Put half of cheese in bottom of pie shell, then asparagus, then bacon, then the rest of the cheese. Fold egg white into egg mixture and then pour over quiche. Bake 10 minutes at 400 and then reduce temperature to 350. Bake an additional 35 minutes or so- depends on your pie pan. When your quiche is done, it will puff up in the middle. It will deflate as soon as you take it out of the oven.

The strawberry rhubarb pie was also easy to make. But I am not going to give the recipe because I think I can do better. This time, I mixed strawberries and chopped rhubarb with sugar, cornstarch and salt, let them sit about half an hour, and then turned into a pie shell. I baked the pie with no top crust at 375 for about 50 minutes. But the pie was too juicy because of the strawberries. I have heard of people cooking down half of the strawberries before mixing all of the ingredients; not sure if they drain the syrup or just cook it down, but I am going to figure this one out. I think I should also use tapioca starch instead of cornstarch. But can someone tell me why?

Oh, and my parents loved the pie. They hadn't eaten rhubarb since they visited dad's cousin Porrid in Ireland a few years ago. I don't understand why I didn't grow up eating rhubarb. My mom's from Massachussetts, for crying out loud. It's easy to grow here in Maryland. Seriously, try to grow one in your yard. It likes part sun. It will grow huge and you will curse me, but not really, because you will make rhubarb pies and cobblers and compotes.

When I posted on facebook that I had made a strawberry-rhubarb pie, my friend Chris Hilliard challenged me to a throwdown.

So friends, I need an awesome, prize-winning strawberry rhubarb pie recipe for the throwdown. Got any favorite recipes? Leave a comment!



Yeon said...

Everything sounds so great! Those small radishes are so cute!
The recipe I have for strawberry rhubarb pie also makes a bit too much juice. I think I will try macerating strawberries in sugar to draw some liquid out, and then cook down the liquid and add back to the pie (or maybe just use the macerated strawberries for the pie and save the liquid for strawberry lemonade, to make the job easy). In any case, I will start working on it as soon as fresh strawberries come out and let you know how it goes!

smoo said...

Hey Yeon- check this out- somebody in Frederick started a community gardening association! http://frederickgardeners.blogspot.com/

Yeon said...

That is so neat! My daily reads are expanding so rapidly!