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Vegan Pie: Rhubarb Recipes for Pie People and Cake People ( . . . mostly pie people)

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When I was young my mother gave me two pieces of cooking advice. First, she said, never eat cake if you can eat pie. And if you’re going to make a pie, she added, make a big pie. Indeed, my mother was the master of all pies, and she spent her entire adult life looking for bigger and bigger pie pans.

I’ve gone through a few big pie pans myself, and every summer I can’t wait for the rhubarb to mature so I can make a big rhubarb pie. Here’s the recipe:


Rhubarb Pie (makes one 10″ deep-dish pie)

Filling

  • 8 C rhubarb (about 2-½ lb., washed and cut into ¾” length pieces)
  • 2 C sugar
  • 2 T powdered Egg Replacer (available at most natural-food grocers)
  • 6 T white flour

Crust

  • 2 C white flour
  • 1 C whole wheat flour
  • 1 C canola (or other vegetable) oil
  • ½ C soy milk (or your favorite alternative milk)

Preparation

To make the crust, mix the oil and milk together with a fork and add the mixture to the flour. Mix well with a fork. This crust needs to be rolled out between sheets of wax paper. (Moisten the counter first with a sponge so the lower sheet will stick to it.) Transfer the rolled crust to the pie pan with the wax paper, and when the crust is in place peel back the paper, tearing it in strips if necessary.

Mix the filling ingredients thoroughly and pour into the crust. Add a top crust and flute the edges. The rhubarb can generate lots of liquid, so you’ll want to cut vents in your top crust and put the pie pan on a cookie sheet before baking.

Bake at 425° for 15 minutes, and then turn the oven down to 375° for another 45 minutes.

(If you absolutely must, you can make two 9″ pies with the same recipe, but you’ll probably have to increase the crust ingredient quantities by 50% or so. …or, of course, you could make one 9″ pie by cutting the filling ingredients by half and cutting the crust ingredients by a quarter. But this gets unnecessarily complicated. You’re better off making a big pie!)

Rhubarb pie is really, really wonderful served warm with a scoop of vanilla soy ice cream on top. OMG!

Okay, I know what you’re going to say. You’re not a pie person, you’re a cake person. That’s too bad, because you’re going to miss out on some really great pie. But the good news is that rhubarb is so wonderful in itself, that it makes a terrific cake too.

Here’s a vegan adaptation of a great recipe I got from my friend Willa Schwartz…


Rhubarb Cake

Cake Ingredients

  • 2 C white flour
  • 1 ½ C brown sugar
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 1 phony chicken’s egg (1 ½ t. powdered Egg Replacer mixed with 2 T water)
  • 3 C rhubarb (washed and chopped fairly fine)
  • ½ C Earth Balance margarine
  • 1 T vinegar
  • 1 C almond milk (or your favorite alternative milk)
  • 1 t. vanilla

Topping Ingredients

  • ½ C sugar
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • ¼ to ½ C chopped walnuts

Preparation

Mix the dry (first 3) cake ingredients together and then add the rest and mix thoroughly. Pour into an oiled and floured 9″x13″ cake pan. Mix the topping ingredients and spread across the top. Bake the cake at 350° for 35 minutes. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla soy ice cream (of course!).

Okay, to summarize, what can everyone—pie people and cake people—learn from my mother? Rhubarb season is a marvelous time of year—let’s take advantage of it. As she would say: Eat lots!

Mark W. Reinhardt is an attorney, writer, and long-time vegan who makes his home in Denver.  He is the author of numerous articles and of the book “The Perfectly Contented Meat Eaters Guide to Vegetarianism”.  Autographed copies of Mark’s book can be purchased at our store.  

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Author: Mark W. Reinhardt

Mark Warren Reinhardt is an attorney and author who has been writing and lecturing on veganism and animal rights issues for longer than anyone can remember. His book, “The Perfectly Contented Meat-Eater’s Guide to Vegetarianism” was published by Continuum in 1998. Mark has previously served on the boards of the Vegetarian Society of Colorado, Rocky Mountain Animal Defense, and Divine Feline, as well as a number of other nonprofit and for-profit organizations. Mark holds degrees in engineering and law from Duke, Harvard, and the University of Chicago. He lives in Denver with his cat Elgie.