We went ’round the mulberry bush last weekend. Well, actually, that’s inaccurate (as is the children’s song – mulberries don’t grow on bushes). It’s a tree that we circled, not a bush. In case you don’t know what a mulberry is, have a look:
I know, I know. They look a bit wormy and alien-like. And unfortunately, these were the most attractive of the batch. They’re also hairy, as berries tend to be, with an elongated, slightly shriveled appearance. Now the latter could just be because the tree from which these were plucked sits on my in-laws’ property in a dark corner where very little sun filters through. Still, this bush – I mean, tree – is a prolific producer and it was heartbreaking to watch these uglies just drop to the ground and rot year after year, no one wanting anything to do with them because of their droopy, limp, shriveldom. That all changed last year when I looked up into the sky, into the arching, berry-weeping branches of this humble tree and thought – pie. Pie in the sky. Mulberry Rhubarb Pie to be specific.
Now this isn’t a “healthy” recipe per se, but what I do believe is healthy is following a “90/10″ diet: eating clean 90% of the time; optionally dirty the other 10% (dabbling/cheating/indulging). Possibly a good formula for life in general. Food for thought.
That said, this pie isn’t all dirty. Mulberries are just as nutritious as any other berry (phytonutrients, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory agents) while rhubarb is high in Vitamin C, K, calcium and dietary fiber. Oh, and in case you’ve never seen rhubarb, they’re much more seductive than their partner in pie – strong, stalk-y and bold with such a lovely blushing hue. Have a look:
No, that’s not an embarrassed celery (half a smile?). I find rhubarb to be quite brash in fact. I have to apply some pressure to their stalks before they finally yield to my knife. They have to be put in their place. I quite enjoy doing this.
Rhubarb is tart; mulberries are slightly sweet. Add sugar and you have a perfect balance of sweet & tart. I can’t properly express how well this marriage works. It is the only pie I will bother myself with because it really is just so incredible. Forget about Strawberry Rhubarb Pie – I’ve had both, and MRP is the ONE. Don’t have mulberries around? Sub in blackberries. Simple. Now go eat pie.
Mulberry Rhubarb Pie
Makes one 9-inch pie
Adapted from: Allrecipes
|1.||Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a large bowl, mix together mulberries, rhubarb, sugar, and flour.|
|2.||Pour into unbaked 9-inch pie shell. Dot filling with butter. Add top crust and cinch top and bottom crust borders together with fingers. Make 4 slits in top crust with a sharp knife. Optional: for a shiny, glazed appearance to pie, brush egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon cold water) over top of crust.|
|3.||Bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F, and bake until pie is done, about 30 minutes longer. Crust should be a light to medium brown and filling will be bubbling.|