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Easy as Pie: National Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie Day

Red Pie

June 9 is perhaps the greatest national (non) Holiday of the year. That you didn’t know about, I mean. Pie, especially fruit pies, is a distinctly American concoction, capturing the bounty of spring, summer and fall in a plethora of tasty versions. Rhubarb and strawberry are a classic combo for the great American pie. (The dessert, not the movie.)

So run right out and get a big ol’ pile of rhubarb and a couple boxes of fresh, juicy strawberries and make a couple of pies! It’s easier than you think.

Notes about rhubarb: This vegetable, which has stalks reminiscent of celery but with brighter colors, is not exactly safe to eat raw. There’s quite a bit of oxalic acid in this plant, a chemical that it makes as a defense mechanism against it being eaten by bugs and small mammals. However, cooking destroys the oxalic acid, and makes the crisp (and somewhat tough) vegetable into a soft, tasty edible. Where else might you run across oxalic acid? Household cleaners, such as Bar Keepers Friend. Great cleaner! As food, though, it’s distinctly lacking.

Don’t like making pie crust? Well, there are great products on your grocer’s shelves to solve that little issue. So what’s your excuse now? Get going! Here’s a recipe you can use. By the way, rhubarb is just one more little thing you can thank Ben Franklin for, besides electric cars, kites and the hundred dollar bill…

Enjoy the (Red and Tasty) Heat!

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