spring rhubarb and apple pie with spelt flour

April is beginning of rhubarb season. Although rhubarb isn’t grown on a commercial scale in Scotland, but the first garden grown might be coming through now. Unfortunately I don’t have garden rhubarb, I will make use of supermarket one. You have to work with what you have 🙂 And to make this delicious pie I decided to use organic wholemeal spelt flour as it’s our favourite at the moment. It’s also much more healthy than regular white flour. The outer part of the grains, either spelt or wheat, contains all the vitamins and micro-elements necessary for health, all good and necessary compounds and minerals that the plant extracted from the soil during its growth. Flour the grains of which are cleaned of this outer layer, is deprived of its basic properties that are of value to our health. Therefore, if you are already preparing something using flour, it is better to choose the wholemeal one, that contain this outer layer of the grain containing all the valuable compounds.

A soft bottom of this rhubarb pie, made with nutty spelt flour, fluffy acidic interior and a crispy top, plus a light and invigorating aroma of cardamom. Spelt flour is very tasty in the dough and let’s say that it is healthier than regular wheat.

Spelt is an ancient grain, more nuttty and complex in flavour than regular wheat flour. It’s also a great source of fiber. The gluten content in spelt is delicate and breaks down in water, over-kneading or mixing can lead to a crumbly texture. But it’s still gluten so if you’re intolerant or have a celiac disease, unfortunately you have to stay away from spelt.

You can use wholemeal spelt for multiple baking purposes: pies, muffins, bread, scones also pizza made with spelt taste delicious.

Try this rhubarb and apple pie this Spring, I can guarantee you won’t regret it. You can use regular sugar to prepare it, also xylitol or other alternative to lower the carb content. Also addition of cardamom gives it a lot of freshness and beautiful aroma. If you don’t mind calories and carb content you can eat still warm piece of pie with a scoop of Madagascan vanilla ice cream – delicious combo 🙂

spring rhubarb and apple pie with spelt flour

NOTE: my measuring cup is 250ml regular glass

INGREDIENTS for spelt crust (I used square baking tray with a side length of approx. 25cm/10inch):

  • 2 cups organic wholemeal spelt flour
  • 4 egg yolks (keep the whites)
  • 200g cold butter
  • 1/3 cup xylitol or other sugar replacement (or regular sugar)
  • 1 tbsp cold water

INGREDIENTS for filling:

  • couple rhubarb stalks
  • 3 small apples
  • 1/3 cup xylitol or other sugar replacement (or regular sugar)
  • 1 tbsp potato starch or cornstarch
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cardamom
  • 4 egg whites + couple spoons of powdered sugar to whip them

DIRECTIONS

Chop the butter into smaller pieces and pre-knead it in a pot or bowl with the remaining ingredients (I always do it this way -it’s less messy). Then put it on a pastry board, sprinkled with spelt flour and knead it as quickly as possible until the ingredients are combined. Divide it into two parts – set aside a little less than 1/3 to make the crumble. Wrap both pieces in a piece of cling film and put them in the freezer. While the dough is cooling down, prepare the filling.

Wash the rhubarb, peel and dice it. Put it in a saucepan, sprinkle it with xylitol, cinnamon and cardamom and simmer it for about 15-20 minutes on low heat until it made something like marmalade. Then switch off th heat, sprinkle it with potato starch and stir quickly not to get lumps. Set aside to cool down. Peel and dice the apples, then add them to the rhubarb and stir.Beat the egg whites to a stiff peaks, lightly salt them at the beginning, and at the end add powdered sugar and beat for 2-3 minutes to make the foam white, thick and shiny.

Cut off a piece of baking paper appropriate to the size of the baking tray and rolled out a bigger piece of spelt dough on it (sprinkling the top with flour to prevent rolling pin from sticking). Place the dough into the baking dish and more or less evened the edges to the height of the edge of the dish. Place rhubarb and apples filling. Then spread whipped egg white on top. Finally, take a well-chilled piece of spelt dough from the freezer and grated it on a coarse-mesh grater directly on top.

Bake in preheated oven – 160°C with a fan or 180°C without fan, for 60 minutes. Cool it down a little in the slightly open oven. It is equally delicious hot and cold.

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