My infatuation continues with coconut oil. I am receiving affirmation from many circles that coconut oil, especially virgin coconut oil pressed from fresh coconut, is very healthy. Doctor friend, John, assurred us that coconut oil is one of the good fats. He recommends only three fats for cooking: coconut oil, butter, or olive oil. All other oils change chemically when subjected to high heat. Oils such as safflower and sunflower [as well as olive oil] can be used in dressings because they are not heated.
We invited John over for dinner to talk about cholesterol as he is very knowledgeable on the subject. I treated him to a wedge of STRAWBERRY RHUBARB PIE WITH COCONUT OIL CRUST. He was also smitten. John enjoys healthy cooking himself but wasn’t pleased with his pie crust using butter. But we both are delighted that using coconut oil produces a delicious, light and flaky crust!!! Success!!! Just substitute the semi-solid oil for the shortening in your favorite recipe or follow the recipe below.
This recipe is like SPRING-IN-A-PIE and would be a delightful addition to your Easter dinner menu.
STRAWBERRY-RHUBARB PIE WITH COCONUT OIL CRUST:
COCONUT OIL PASTRY:
[For one 9-inch double crust pie.]
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt [slightly rounded]
2/3 cup LouAna Pure Coconut Oil [coconut oil is semi-solid and looks like Crisco]*
5 to 7 tablespoons ice water
Sift flour and salt together; cut in coconut oil with pastry blender till pieces are the size of small peas. [For extra tender pastry, cut in half the oil till like cornmeal. Cut in remaining till like small peas.] Sprinkle 1 tablespoon water over part of mixture. Gently toss with fork; push to side of bowl. Repeat till all is moistened. Form into a ball. Divide dough for lower and upper crust and form into balls. Flatten on lightly floured surface by pressing with edge of hand. Sprinkle lightly with extra flour. Roll from center to edge between two sheets of waxed paper till 1/8 inch thick. Roll first sheet of pastry onto rolling pin and position in pie plate. Trim lower crust about 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fill crust with strawberry-rhubarb filling [below]. Dot with 2 tablespoons butter.
Roll second ball of dough. Moisten edge of lower crust with ice water. Roll top crust onto rolling pin and position on top of filled pie. Press down on rim where two crusts meet. Trim top crust to match bottom crust. Turn crust edges under and flute edges. Cut slits in top crust.
Bake pie at 400 degrees for 50 minutes. Check pie after 40 minutes. If pie is browning too quickly, lay a sheet of aluminum foil over pie and continue baking until done. Juices should be bubbling out of slits on top crust and crust should be golden brown.
*LouAna Pure Coconut Oil is available at Walmart in the oil/baking aisle. Walmart also sells Organic Coconut Oil but not Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, the healthiest and most flavorful coconut product. Find this product in the natural/healthy foods sections of other stores.
Combine 3 cups ½-inch sliced fresh rhubarb, 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries, 1 2/3 cups sugar, 1/3 + 1 tb. all-purpose flour, and dash salt. Let stand 15 minutes.