Tag Archives: AllRecipes

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

I am home visiting my parents this weekend and while we were grocery shopping I saw some big stalks of red rhubarb. It reminded me that I have been wanting to make something with rhubarb so I mentioned it to my mom. She thought it would be fun to make a strawberry rhubarb pie and so we did.

I grabbed a pint of strawberries to add to the dish and they turned out to be some of the best looking strawberries I’ve ever seen.

Strawberries

I knew rhubarb had a distinct tart flavor to it so I wasn’t how much to use, but the recipe said 2 cups, so I used 2 cups.

Here are a couple quick facts about rhubarb.

  1. Although technically a vegetable, a New York court decided it was a fruit in 1947.
  2. The green leaves that grow on rhubarb are poisonous and therefore you won’t find them attached in stores.

Rhubarb

The strawberries and rhubarb are then mixed together with a cup of sugar and a half cup of flour.

The Filling 1

This makes the gooey pie filling which needs to rest for 30 minutes before baking.  The sugar interacts with the acidity in the fruit and the flour is added because both fruits produce a lot of water when baked and it acts as a thickening agent.

The Filling 2

Confession time.  The pie crust was made with gluten free flour which did not have the same consistency that regular flour produces.  It turned out too wet and did not roll or shape well at all.

Pie Filled

This is my attempt at making a cool pattern for the top crust.  Alternating cuts should have made a neat design but due to the consistency of the gluten free dough it didn’t turn out so well.

The Pattern

I had to freeze the top crust to make it easier to work with so that’s why it looks a little awkward here.  I brushed with an egg wash and sprinkled with sugar.

Top Crust

This baked for ~60 minutes on 400F.   It made the kitchen smell amazing and it looked ok as it came out.   The crazy thing is that the crust still wasn’t done.  It looked done but was still very soft and undercooked.   We let it cool for a couple hours and ate it with vanilla ice cream.

Cooked

The crust was soft and a little mealy which I can only attribute to the gluten free flour.  It was actually better the next day after it had been refrigerated over night.    I’ll need to redeem this attempt and make it again with a gluten-full All Purpose Flour crust.

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Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo

One of my favorite dinners to make is chicken fettuccine alfredo.  I found a recipe a while back that has never failed me and I felt like making it again today.  I asked The Mrs. if she supported this decision and she said “I don’t think we have fettuccine noodles.”,  to which I responded “We have flour and eggs right?”.  You see, not having a box of noodles shouldn’t hinder your ability to make pasta.   How do you think they end up in the box?!

This past Christmas I received a pasta press and about 2 months ago I took a class on handmade pasta.  Pasta dough is made up of flour, eggs, salt, and oil.   The ratio of flour to eggs varies widely.  Today I used 1 cup of flour and 2 eggs, a tablespoon of olive oil, and 1/2 tsp of salt.  I had to add a little water to make it come together though.   This made enough pasta for ~3 servings I would say.   I also changed up the flour a bit. I used 1/2 cup of regular All Purpose Flour and 1/2 cup of Semolina Flour and I thought the result was a much sturdier noodle.

Flour and Eggs

I decided to mix this by hand and knead the dough for ~15 minutes into this smooth looking ball.  You then let it sit for ~30 minutes to let the gluten rest.

Pasta Dough

Now it takes some time to knead the dough, press it out, and cut into perfect strips, but what else would I rather do on a Sunday afternoon?  The pressing and cutting are actually done for me thanks to the pasta press, so it was just the kneading that I labored over.

Pressed Flat

Cutting pasta

You’ll want to dust the noodles with flour so they don’t stick together.

Pile of Pasta

The alfredo sauce starts by making a roux, which is butter and flour.  I add garlic, onion power, and italian seasoning as the recipe calls for.  After the flour taste cooks off you add milk, heavy cream, and the cheeses (parmesan and cheddar this time).  This is when it starts to get good.  You see it thicken up and become that beautiful white sauce you know is going to taste so good.

Cheese sauce

You throw in the cooked chicken, tomatoes, and this recipe finishes it with sour cream.  I’ve seen others call for cream cheese at this point which is a great alternative.

Final sauce

I cut this particular recipe in half, which still serves 4, so we have leftovers for tomorrow.  It turned out a little more red than I remember, I must have used more tomato this time.

Yum

To make this dish even more hand made I’ll need to raise the chicken, make the cheese, and grow the tomato.  I’m working on it.


Banana Muffins

What do you do when life gives you ripened (aka black) bananas?  Make Banana Muffins (or bread)!  I decided last week that I should be making more muffins and it just so happened I had 3 ripe bananas waiting for me when I got home from Indiana.  Muffins are an easy thing to throw together and make for a quick breakfast.   This was the first time making this particular recipe and I thought they turned out quite nicely (10 muffins).  The crumble on top is the best part.  The Mrs. ate ~1.5 of them, which left me to finish the other 8.5.  I didn’t complain.

Banana Muffins


You’re My Sweet Potato Pie

Tomorrow night our small group from church is getting together and we’re having a “Snackluck”, the combination of the traditional Potluck but with snacks. Get it?   What started as a casual idea turned into an unspoken (out loud) competition to see who would bring the best food item.  Heidi is making a mushroom spread and I’ve decided on a Sweet Potato Pie.

Let me first start off by saying that this pie is made from scratch.  Let me pause on the word scratch for a second.  I’m going to assume most of you just thought to yourself, “store bought crust, can of sweet potato puree, and followed the recipe on the can.”  And you’d all be wrong.  When I say from scratch, I mean it.

The crust, which is a simple flour, butter, sugar, water combination, was lovingly made by hand.  By yours truly. NBD.  I use the pie crust recipe explained in the first couple minutes of this video from Cookology.  Off Topic:  That video is about making a pumpkin pie from scratch, which I also did last Thanksgiving and my name has been recorded in the history books forever.

Dough Ball

The dough is kind of the focal point here but also notice the pastry mat underneath.  See the awesome measurements and pie rings?!  It was a Christmas gift from The Mrs. and it’s wonderful.  I recommend having one. No more rulers and a lot quicker cleanup.

This is for a 9″ pie pan but you can see it’s rolled out to ~11″, this is because the crust goes up the sides of the pan and should overlap the edge as well.

Rolled Dough

The sweet potatoes are the real deal (garnet yams).  Cans (and box mixes for that matter), let’s just say, are for posers.   I first peeled the potatoes, cut them in slices and boiled them until soft and tender.

Lesson Learned #1:  Boiling adds water to the potatoes and thus can make it a runnier puree which may cause it to cook funny.   So make sure to really drain those potatoes.  The alternative is to wrap the potatoes in foil and bake them for a really long time and scoop out the insides.

Boiling

Then you puree them until they’re as smooth and soft as… a baby’s bottom…. sure, we’ll go with that.  I used an immersion blender for those who are curious.

Puree

After that it’s just blending in the rest of the ingredients: butter, sugar (white and brown), eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla.

Combined

Did someone say nutmeg?  Fun Fact for the Day:  Nutmeg in large quantities turns out to be a nasty hallucinogen.  Feel free to peruse these Google results if interested.

Once all the ingredients are combined, you fill a 9″ pie pan.

Oven Ready

It’s goes into the oven at 350 for 50-60 minutes.

Lesson Learned #2:  A handmade buttery pie crust once heated will melt the butter and cause it to start dripping onto the oven floor. This results in a little smoke and possibly a smoke detector going off.  Put a baking sheet on the rack below it to catch the falling butter droplets. Problem solved.

Finished

 

I’ll let you know when I win the Snackluck.