Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Cabbage, Squash and Spring Onion Pie

Way back in 2008 Deb at Smitten Kitchen raved about Tomato and Corn Pie, I didn't bookmark it. Leslie made the pie, substituting greek yogurt for mayo, and said it was amazing. Still I ignored the recipe, though I did bookmark an adapted version Jeannette at Everybody Loves Sandwiches made using her favorite biscuit dough. I guess I was afraid of pie crust after attempting a lattice on my first pie.

2011 rolls around, Leslie still says Tomato and Corn Pie is one of her favorite dishes and Rachel informs me Peter loves it too. So I finally decide to try it out, only at the time tomato and corn weren't in season. Since I had cabbage, squash and red spring onions courtesy of my farming internship, I changed the filling to include those items. The filling's bright lemon flavor, hint crunch from the cabbage and overall vegetal sweetness were a hit with my taste testers.

For trial one, I used Smitten Kitchen's Cream Biscuits for the pie's crust. If, like Jeannette, I had a favorite biscuit dough recipe I could make in my sleep this would have indeed been easy. Instead it was a bit messy to put together. That said the resulting pie "crust" was doughy and a little flaky. I also added a sprinkling of feta on top of the vegetables.

For trial two, I stuck to the original crust recipe and OMFG (remember that controversial ad campaign from Gossip Girl Season 2) the resulting flaky, golden crust was SO good. I don't think you can beat butter. It also was super easy since I used the food processor to assemble the crust and it rolled out nicely. As the feta hadn't added a significant flavor I skipped it.

Final thoughts... Take whatever produce you have, throw it in Epicurious' buttery crust and call it dinner, lunch and snack. The meal time won't matter; this pie and its original crust are a little bite of heaven and it reheats pretty well. I can't wait to try the tomato and corn version for the first time next week while vacationing. As for the heavy cream biscuits, I would make them again too if I had cream on hand but not butter and need a biscuit.

Cabbage, Squash and Spring Onion Pie
Adapted from Tomato and Corn Pie from Gourmet 2003 at Epicurious with reference to the recipes linked above

3/4 cup Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3/4 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 tablespoon Baking Powder
1 3/4 teaspoons Salt
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) Cold Unsalted Butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, plus 2 teaspoons melted
3/4 cup Whole Milk
2 tablespoons Mayonnaise
Zest of a Lemon and juice from 1/2 of it
1 medium to small Summer Squash
1/2 head Cabbage
4 Red Spring Onions
Salt and Pepper

1. Slice the summer squash into circles, I aimed for 1/8 inch or less, sprinkle it with salt and set aside. Slide the onions into circles. Chop the cabbage up thin ribbons, then go back over it to break it into small pieces. (You may not be able to fit all the veggies into your pie, if not they'll be great for stir fry.)
2. Add unbleached all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, and 3/4 teaspoon salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until it resembles wet sand. Add milk and continue to pulse until a dough forms, then remove from the food processor and make it into a ball. (This can be done by hand. See the original recipe for instructions).
3. Place one sheet of plastic wrap on the counter and place the dough ball on it. Divide the dough in half. Wrap half in plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator. Cover the remaining dough with a sheet of plastic wrap, then roll it out into an approximately 2-inch round that is 1/8 inch thick. Remove top sheet of plastic wrap and lift dough using bottom sheet of plastic wrap and invert into a 10-inch glass pie plate, patting with your fingers to fit. Set the plastic wrap aside.
4. Preheat oven to 400°F.
5. Stir together mayonnaise, lemon juice and lemon zest. Pat the water off the squash. Arrange a layer of overlapping squash in crust, then a layer of onions and finally the cabbage. Spread approximately half the mayo mixture over top and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then repeat the layering process.
6. Remove the remaining dough from the refrigerator. Spread out the plastic wrapping it, place another sheet of plastic on top and roll it out into an approximately 2-inch round that is 1/8 inch thick. Fit it over the filling and pinch it into the bottom crust. Cut steam vents in the top and brush with melted butter.
7. Place the pie in the oven on the middle rack and bake until crust is golden, approximately 35 minutes, then cool on a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

P.S. If you have any must try ideas for first time visitors to Cape Cod, please leave them in the comments. I leave Friday morning!

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