Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Vegan Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie with Crumb Topping

Every couple of weeks, I get a local, organic produce basket. (It's from gdfd2u, in case you were wondering and/or needed an amazing company to go through yourself.) 

I got rhubarb in my last produce basket. You know what that means: strawberries are in order!

There is a definite shortage of vegan pie recipes out there, if you ask me. Considering how easy it is to make your pie vegan, I'm surprised that more people aren't doing it. But never fear: I've got you.

I based this recipe heavily on Joanne's Deep Dish Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie with Crumb Topping. In fact, for the sake of accuracy, I should say that I pretty much just used this recipe and subbed where needed to make it vegan. (With the exception of baking it a little different--my pastry doesn't hold up to pre-baking with nothing in it, as hers may.) Does it taste as buttery as her pie? Probably not. But it's still pretty damn good.

Things I'd do differently? I wouldn't fill the pie plate so full of filling (mine overflowed, as you can see in the photo below). And more sugar, actually. My strawberries were not very sweet, and so they didn't do much to help the rhubarb. If you have sweet strawberries, you're probably set. My pie is still definitely edible, but it just has a bit more tang than I'm used to in a strawberry-rhubarb pie.

Also, it only used a little under half of my pastry. I think I smell a Wellington in my near future...

And so without further ado, here's the recipe!

This pie is a little tart, but really yummy!
Vegan Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie with Crumb Topping 
Makes 1 large pie
4 cups halved strawberries
3 cups 1/2-inch pieces of rhubarb *
1 cup sugar (+ 1/4 cup if too tart)
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 
2/3 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
6 Tablespoons Earth Balance 
1 batch of vegan pastry, chilled & ready to use (you'll only use half)
Preheat oven to 400°F (if using a metal pie plate) or 375°F (if using a glass pie plate, as I did). In a large pot, mix together strawberries, rhubarb, 1 cup sugar, cornstarch, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and nutmeg. Let stand for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the juices are released and the fruit is well-coated in a sugary sauce.
While you're waiting for the filling to get saucy, prepare your crumb topping. Mix together your rolled oats, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Cut in the Earth Balance until you have a crumbly mixture. Set aside. 
When the filling has released all the juices, put the pot over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring often. When it comes to a boil, simmer for 3 minutes or so, until the filling thickens quite a bit. Remove from heat. 
Using 1/2 of the pastry, roll out a bottom crust for your pie on a generously-floured board. When the pastry is nice and thin, and large enough to cover the pie plate with room to spare, gently fold the circle of pastry in half or in quarters to transfer easily to your pie plate. Once there, unfold and adjust as needed to cover all of the edges, and make sure to let any air pockets escape. Don't trim the edges just yet. 
Pour the filling into the pie shell till it comes up even with the top of the plate. Don't overfill, or it will overflow during baking and make a big mess in your oven, as it did to mine! Once the filling is in, take a sharp knife and trim the pastry around the edge of the pie plate. You should be able to see a 1/4 to 1/2 inch pastry ring surrounding your filling. Sprinkle the crumb topping over the filling, being sure to get right to the edge of the pie and covering the exposed pastry at the sides as best you can. You should have enough topping to make sure there is no fruit peeking out anywhere. 
Bake the pie for approximately 30 minutes, or until the topping is nice and brown and the filling is just starting to bubble up under the crumb topping. Remove from oven and allow to cool in the pie plate as necessary. Please note that glass pie plates get extremely hot and cool down slowly, so please be very careful not to burn yourself! 
This pie can be served warm or chilled right out of the fridge. It would be excellent with a dollop of coconut whipped cream or vegan ice cream! Will cut into 6-8 slices. 
* Be careful to get all the greens off the rhubarb. They're toxic to humans and will make you ill if you get some in your pie!


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