A Labor of Love and “Thank You” Rhubarb + Cardamom Two-Bite Pies

Details

Posted
1 Comment
A note from Maggie

I first saw Katherine’s intimate photographs and endearing stories on social media. When I learned she lived in Boston, I thought, Boston hit the jackpot. I did too!

You see, Katherine speaks both Spanish and French. She makes homemade fritos entirely from scratch. She puts potatoes, bacon, and cheese on a pizza, together. She even puts chili in her chocolate truffles. In other words, she’s my kind of lady.

Lucky me, I’ve had the chance to get to know (and hug!) Katherine in person and she’s just as amazing in real life. I’m thrilled to say that Katherine Hysmith will contribute recipes and projects to Eat Boutique, starting with this wonderful thank you gift using one of my all-time favorite fruits: rhubarb.

Slip this recipe into your back pocket whenever you’ve got some thanking to do, which is generally all the time, right?! Welcome, Katherine. I’m, and the whole Eat Boutique team is, tickled to have you here.

 

rhubarbpie2

The plan was to be barefoot and pregnant … and baking. And then I would bring whatever I baked to my lovely nurses after all was said and done. That’s how I intended to get through the early stages of labor and that’s exactly what I told my midwife. Of course, she just laughed at me. I shared this plan with my dad, also an avid baker and my go-to person when it comes to anything related to food, and he seemed to think it was a good idea, too.

He flew up the week before my due date, we gathered apples and cranberries and bought enough butter and sugar to last long after the holiday baking season. We spent the mornings hiking, trying to get the little one to make an early entrance, and the afternoons in the kitchen dreaming up pie combinations. My due date came and went and the last slice of pie was disappointedly eaten. Worst of all, my dad had to fly back home to Texas without any baby pictures and nary a pie crust crumb.

Eat Boutique-Laborpie-6Rhubarb_Mini_Pie_Eat_Boutique_5

One week later, little bit decided to make her debut. Without my baking partner and without a single ounce of butter in the house (not even sure how that happened), my labor plan didn’t stand a chance. I really wanted to be able to one day tell my daughter that I fluted pie dough and sautéed apples between contractions. Instead I related all this to my nurses, crying and apologizing for the pies I didn’t bring. It’s the thought that counts, I guess.

Rhubarb_Mini_Pies_Eat_Boutique_11rhubarb_mini_pies_eat_boutique_1

A couple weeks later, I finally sent out a few “thank you” notes attached to my new little baking assistant’s birth announcement, but still no pie. Five months later, I still have baker’s remorse and will probably end up dropping off a dozen buttery somethings by the maternity ward and hope that some of my same nurses still work there. It’s silly, I know, but a slice of gratitude pie is never turned down.

So whether you’re prepping for the end of your pregnancy or maybe just grateful for the kind folks who gave you your annual wellness-check this year, these pies are a great way to say “thank you”.

Be sure to bake an extra for yourself to nibble on while you fill out those cards, you probably deserve some gratitude, too.

Eat Boutique-Laborpie-7Rhubarb_Mini_Pies_Eat_Boutique_2

Notes:

  • If you don’t want to use the actual Mason jar lid (you’ll still need to use the metal band) you can make little lids using several layers of aluminum foil.
  • While the jam or preserves should be sweet (i.e. not sugar-free), the flavor is flexible and can easily be changed to suit other fruits or your preference.
  • For extra-leak protection, you can place a layer of bakery tissue (or parchment paper) in the cellophane bags before adding the little pies.

Rhubarb_Mini_Pie_Eat_Boutique_3

rhubarb + cardamom two-bite pies

Mason jar lids create the perfect two-bite pie and make for easy gifting. This recipe can easily be swapped for other fruits, so long as they are thinly sliced or diced, and other spices, too. Think thin apple matchsticks with cinnamon, nectarines with fresh thyme, or blackberries with lemon.

Makes: 16 two-bite pies

Prep Time: 30 Minutes

Total Time: 1 Hours 45 Minutes

Ingredients:

Special equipment
  • 16 Mason jar bands and lids
For the crust
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, chilled
  • 5 tablespoons ice-cold water
For the filling
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon green cardamom pods, lightly smashed open with the blade of a knife or a rolling pin
  • 1/3 cup jam or preserves (such as strawberry, strawberry-rhubarb, or apricot)
  • 3 big stalks (about 3/4 pound) rhubarb
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, roughly chopped

Directions:

Make the crust
  1. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flour and salt. Add the chilled butter one tablespoon at a time, pulsing a few seconds between each addition, until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal with a few pea-sized pieces of butter remaining. With the processor running, pour in one tablespoon of water at a time until the dough just comes together. The dough should easily stick together when pinched between your fingers, but not be so soggy that it feels wet. Turn the dough onto a lightly-floured surface and gently form into a small disc. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour.
  2. Remove the chilled dough from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes. Unwrap, place on a lightly-floured surface, and gently roll out the dough to about 1/4-inch thick. Place a Mason jar lid band onto the dough and trim, allowing a 1/2 inch or so excess all the way around. Repeat with remaining dough, rerolling as necessary, until you have 16 little dough circles.
Make the pie
  1. Set oven to 350°F. Prep the Mason jar bands, ensuring each one has a matching lid in the bottom with the metal facing up. Gently tuck a dough circle into each Mason jar lid, pushing in the bottom edges and up the sides with your fingertips. Leave the edges of the crust as is or trim with a small paring knife. Spread the little pie shells onto a baking sheet and place in the middle of the oven. Bake until the crusts are just set and begin to turn a very light gold, about 10 to 12 minutes. While the crusts are still warm, gently spread a teaspoon or so of jam on the bottom of each.
  2. ]Using a sharp knife, trim the edges of the rhubarb and cut the stalk into about 1 3/4-inch long pieces (just the right size to fit into the Mason jar lids). Slice these pieces into thin--about 1/8- inch--rectangles. Make a small stack of 8 to 10 rectangles, then spread like a deck of cards, with each slice slightly overlapping. Gently place the rhubarb on top of the jam, adding another slice or two to fill in any open areas of the pie. Repeat with remaining rhubarb and pie shells.
  3. In a small saucepan set over medium heat, add the butter and cardamom pods. Once the butter is melted and just begins to bubble, turn off the heat and let the spices steep for 5 minutes. Strain the butter, discard the spices, and then gently brush over the rhubarb and crust of each pie. Evenly sprinkle the tops of the pies with sugar and the chopped almonds. Return to the oven and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the filling bubbles and the crusts are a lovely golden color. Remove and let cool completely before packaging.

Materials

  • Cellophane bags
  • Plain kitchen twine
  • "Thank You" postcards or large unlined index cards

Directions

  1. Simply lay one or two little pies face-up in each cellophane bag and tightly tie with a piece of plain kitchen twine. Pair with a thoughtful "thank you" (I like the lovely floral ones from Rifle Paper Co.). If you have the time, pick up coffee and all the fixins' to drop off with the pies.
Gif created and photos styled and taken by Katherine Hysmith.

Eat Boutique is an award-winning shop and story-driven recipe site created by Maggie Battista. After hosting pop-up markets for 25,000+ guests, Maggie is now focused on opening her first permanent Eat Boutique​–​a food​-​retail concept space ​with a new way to the very best food. Her second cookbook, A New Way to Food: Recipes That Revamped My Pantry & Made Me Love Me, At Last, will be published by Roost Books/Penguin Random House in 2019. Her first cookbook, Food Gift Love, features more than 100 food gift recipes to make, wrap, and share and is available wherever you find favorite cookbooks.

Follow Eat Boutique’s founder Maggie here: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

Follow Eat Boutique here: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and Pinterest.

Comments

  • savvy

    I’ve got rhubarb in my garden, and a ‘stitch and gab’ group gathering next week!! Your timing is PERFECT!! Thanks!! nothing like ‘spring’ getting ignited with rhubarb!!