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Whereas making an attempt out fancy cooking strategies is one in all my favourite elements of being within the kitchen, there’s one thing admirable about cooks who hold issues easy. That’s why I like Edna Lewis, the queen of simplicity! Her recipes (a lot of which she discovered from her mom and household when she was rising up in Virginia) aren’t about being flashy — they’re about utilizing fundamental cooking strategies to make actually flavorful meals.
I respect Lewis for a lot of, many causes, however chief amongst them is the truth that she was capable of flip me, a rhubarb skeptic, right into a convert. All it took was one (easy) recipe: the rhubarb pie recipe from her famend cookbook The Taste of Country Cooking. To be honest, I’m undecided I’d ever given rhubarb an actual strive: I by no means cared for strawberry-rhubarb desserts as a child and have steered away from rhubarb ever since. However after having nice success with a lot of Lewis’ recipes, I knew if anybody may persuade me, it’d be her. And I used to be proper.
Lewis’ pie is a no-fuss, no-frills recipe that makes rhubarb shine in a method I didn’t assume was doable. You don’t want any particular gear, and the dough might be blended by hand, which I stay for. Plus, I enormously recognize that she requires lard within the crust. Don’t get me flawed — an all-butter pie crust is totally scrumptious. However as somebody who has been decreased to tears over the butter in my pie crust melting too shortly, I can confidently say I a lot favor lard. It’s simpler to work with and nonetheless produces that flakiness we’re all after.
In typical Lewis vogue, the filling for the pie is simply rhubarb, sugar, cornstarch, and a contact of freshly grated nutmeg. I really like that she lets the primary ingredient do its factor with out making it overly sophisticated. The sugar quantity — simply 2/3 cup — is ideal. It’s sufficient to convey out the rhubarb taste with out making the filling cloyingly candy, and the freshly grated nutmeg elevates the style of your entire pie.
Earlier than including the filling, you line the underside crust with a combination of sugar, cornstarch, and nutmeg. This retains it completely crispy because it bakes, so that you don’t have to fret about leakage because the rhubarb filling begins to bubble within the oven. The top product is a flaky, golden-brown pastry with a stunning tart filling. Throw a giant dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of ice cream on there and also you’ve acquired a bit of slice of heaven.
Thanks, Edna, for reminding me how refreshing it’s to pare issues again and concentrate on making the primary substances the very best variations of themselves.
If You’re Making Edna’s Lewis’ Rhubarb Pie, a Few Suggestions
At Kitchn, our editors develop and debut brand-new recipes on the positioning each single week. However at residence, we even have our personal tried-and-true dishes that we make over and over — as a result of fairly merely? We love them. Kitchn Love Letters is a sequence that shares our favourite, over-and-over recipes.