I am not a cook, meaning I don't braise or fricassee or whatever. I do make a lot of noise and a big mess in the kitchen, and oftentimes good food. And I can follow a recipe-mostly*-i'll explain. This one turned out pretty freaking awesome. It's for a strawberry-rhubarb tart. I'll go over the crust in this post, and the filling in the next. Between my husband and I, the whole pie lasted less than 24 hours. Yum. A big part I think was how the crust turned out, which was surprisingly healthy and delicious. I will definitely be using this pie crust again.
I am a pie crust connoisseur. When I was little, at any party or Thanksgiving, etc. I would secretly pinch off pieces and eat them. Like this:
I have left pies crustless before. And my dad would let me eat his crust off his pie slice so I had this crazy kid reasoning that crusts were for kids and the pie was for the adults. Anyway, we got an amazing strawberry bounty on one of our trips to our garden, so I googled some recipes and chose this strawberry-rhubarb tart recipe from eatingwell.com. My disclaimer is that we actually ended up eating all the strawberries before I could make it to the farmer's market for rhubarb. So I bought strawberries and rhubarb specifically to try this recipe since it sounded healthy, delicious, and easy.
*Of course I made the original recipe my own, since I leave out steps from recipes that I deem are unnecessary or sometimes too lazy to try. So here's how I made the crust, the original recipe with my own modifications:
Really awesome pie crust
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
3 tablespoons 1% milk (I used skim, it's what I had and I didn't want to go to the store.)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest (Again, didn't have lemons, feel like going to the store, or zesting)
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons canola oil
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom (I used a 9-inch regular pie pan) with cooking spray. Spread oats in a small baking dish and bake, stirring occasionally, until toasted, 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool. ( I might have let it cool for 90 seconds)
- Place the oats in a food processor and process until finely ground.Combine milk and vanilla in a small bowl. Whisk the ground oats, flour, sugar, lemon zest, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Drizzle oil onto the dry ingredients and stir with a fork or your fingers until crumbly. Use a fork to stir in the milk mixture, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough just comes together. (It forms a big sticky ball)
- Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead 7 to 8 times. Roll the dough out to an 11-inch circle, dusting with flour if necessary. Transfer to the prepared pan, pressing to fit. Trim the edges. (Here's what I did: Knead the big sticky dough ball in the mixing bowl 7-8 times, Call hubby to recoat pie pan with cooking spray before transferring to pie pan. Try to press out sticky dough ball getting all over your fingers then call hubby to save you. He FLOURED his hands then pressed sticky dough ball to fit the sides and bottom of the pie pan. No trimming.)
- Line the tart shell with a piece of foil or parchment paper and fill with pie weights or dried beans. (Used rice as a pie weight, again, no beans, didn't want to go to the store.
- Bake the tart shell until set, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove weights and foil or paper and bake until lightly browned, 8 to 12 minutes more. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.
Finished pie crust.
This is a seriously good pie crust. Love it.
Here's the rest of the strawberry rhubarb tart.