Monday, October 7, 2013

Green Tomato Pie

 Green tomatoes? In a dessert pie? I know, I know... crazy, right? Who knew? But just go with me on this one! This is a great recipe to use when you have a bunch of end-of-the-season green tomatoes. You normally wouldn't think of a tomato as being a dessert item, but it's awesome when you add the orange and spices and raisins to it. I'm always intrigued when I see a recipe that uses an ingredient in an unusual way. So, clearly, when I saw this one, I knew I had to try it. The recipe is from Paula Deen, and I've made her other Tomato Pie several times (with great success!), so I figured this one must be good too! Actually, I've read that you can use any Apple Pie recipe and just substitute green tomatoes for the apples. I chose this recipe because it seemed a little different with the orange zest and the raisins. And just wait 'til you taste it! It's sweet and spicy and the orange zest really pops with the tartness from the tomatoes. I bet it would be great with a dollop of fresh whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream! It's really fun and different and quite delicious! Try it!

Pie crust for 2 crust pie*
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 tbs tapioca flour or corn starch
1 tsp grated orange zest
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 cup raisins
5 green tomatoes, or enough to fill pie crust, thinly sliced

1 slightly beaten egg white
sugar, for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 425ºF.
Mix sugar, tapioca flour (or corn starch), orange zest, cinnamon, nutmeg, and raisins in a large bowl. Lay tomato slices in pie crust. Sprinkle mixture over tomatoes. (Overlapping will occur but tomatoes will shrink in size when baked.) Gently lay top pie crust over filling, tucking in the extra crust around the edges. Pinch dough with fingers or butter knife to seal edges. Using a knife, make 4 to 6 slits in top of crust to allow steam to escape. Brush top with egg white and sprinkle with a little sugar to give your crust a shine.
Place pie in the preheated oven and bake for 25 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350ºF and continue to bake for 20 more minutes. Cool on wire rack.

*Instead of making the crust from scratch, I used a ready made refrigerated pie crust, just because they're so convenient and quick, but feel free to use my Easy Pie Crust, if you'd like. I decided to weave the pie crust instead of doing the slits in the top crust as directed. If you'd like to learn how to do that, just watch my video How to Make a Lattice Top.

 It's really quite sweet so I think next time I would probably dial back the sugar just a tiny bit. Also, be sure not to add more than a tsp of orange zest. It doesn't seem like it's a lot, but you don't want it to dominate the other flavors.
I layered the tomatoes and sprinkled a little of the sugar mixture over each layer instead of just placing all the tomatoes in the plate and then dumping the sugar on top. I suppose you could also chop the tomatoes instead of slicing them and just mix everything together in a big bowl before pouring the filling into your pie crust.

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