Serious Eats: Recipes

Cook the Book: Rhubarb Cream Cheese Pie with Fresh Strawberries

Photograph from Svadilfari on Flickr

20090601rusticfruitdesserts.jpgWhen I see those beautiful crimson and green stalks of rhubarb at the market my first instinct is to pick up an bunch, take it home, and make something with it, but I never do. Honestly, I am a intimidated by rhubarb, and my intimidation comes from ignorance. A quick trip over to Wikipedia assuaged my fears, and answered all of my rhubarb queries.

My first question was whether rhubarb is a fruit or a vegetable. As it turns out, rhubarb is a vegetable, a member of the Polygonaceae family whose members include sorrel and buckwheat. My next question was concerning the possible toxicity of rhubarb. The leaves of the rhubarb plant contain a few scary poisonous substances, but when was the last time you saw rhubarb with leaves attached for sale? One would have to consume 11 pounds of rhubarb leaves for anything bad to happen. So now that we have happily concluded that rhubarb is a safe vegetable to eat, on to dessert.

I'm pretty sure that strawberry rhubarb pie is responsible for the majority of rhubarb consumption in this country. This recipe for Rhubarb Cream Cheese Pie with Fresh Strawberries from Rustic Fruit Desserts by Julie Richardson and Cory Schreiber takes this classic combination a step further by adding a delicious cream cheese custard to the mix.

Win 'Rustic Fruit Desserts'

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Rustic Fruit Desserts to give away this week.

Pastry adapted from Rustic Fruit Desserts by Julie Richardson and Cory Schreiber.

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