This was my first time trying rhubarb! I’m so grateful that this project has opened my eyes (and taste buds) to delicious new and unanticipated flavors. This recipe is from the niche cookbook, What Real Alaskans Eat: Not Your Ordinary Cookbook (an affiliated link), which has been super helpful for me in finding authentic Alaskan recipes. According to the cookbook, rhubarb is a common backyard garden crop in Alaska during summer months along with zucchini. So many Alaskan recipes feature this pink and iridescent tart treat.
I like many desserts, but this one is particularly flavorful and I highly recommend it, especially if you’re a fan of berry crumbles with a slightly sweet and sour flavor.
I had trouble imagining this dish—I had guessed it would be disgusting, potentially, or actually excellent, but I didn’t think it would end up in the “very good, but not worth the calories” camp. I love salmon and I love pies, and salmon and brown rice is always good. But cabbage, mushrooms, and vinegar? Actually, that part came out pretty tasty, too.
I used this recipe for the puffed pastry—I made my own to avoid hydrogenated oils in the store-bought kind, but, man, the homemade kind comes out so much better anyway. (Just for reference if you want to try it and you’re an American reader— roughly two cups of flour is about the same as 250 grams). Although the crust was supreme, I think the best thing I’ve gotten out of that recipe is the rolling pin technique for pie crusts—which is to start at one end and just keep rolling the whole thing out that way. I’ve never been able to get a dough as thin as this one previously.
What’s especially great about this recipe is that it slants away from the strictly traditional dishes and creates a fusion dish incorporating the many cultures represented in Australia today. Chicken pot pie is a traditional favorite along with meat pies, and it’s a favorite of mine, too—here in the States, chicken pot pies are fairly common. I also love Thai food, so this mix of pot pie and curry sounded promising.
This is the recipe I used for making the traditional Australian meat pie—and boy, was it good! What’s great about the meat pie is that it seems familiar and new all at once—it’s very much a comfort food that feels familiar somehow, but the flavor of the meat filling is subtly different from the American meat seasonings I’m accustomed to.