My mother's mother, Viola Pfeiffer Werner, loved to work in the kitchen. Whenever we visited the farm for a Sunday afternoon, there was always an abundance of food and always there were cookies or desserts. My mother's parents' farm was the one place we all liked to go. Grandpa had cows, pigs, chickens and over 60 acres of land with woods and a river. As children, my 2 sisters and I often spent weeks at the farm in the summer.
My grandma was very active in her church, the First Congregational Church of Sullivan, OH. Sullivan, OH is one of those small crossroad communities where the church was a major gathering place. Actually, Sullivan had two churches and my dad's parents went to the other church in town, the First Christian Church.
In 1950, the women of the First Congregational Church decided to create a cookbook of their favorite dishes. It wasn't until the 1990's that I was aware of this. When my mother passed away in 1999, I was going through some of her cookbooks to take home to my daughter. (My mother was a collector of recipes in any form and would often jot them down on the back of an envelope.) I ran across a small red-covered spiral-bound cookbook of recipes called Cook Book - Compiled by Sullivan Congregational Church Sullivan, Ohio and dated 1950. When I opened the book, I was totally swept away by the fact that all of the recipes were presented in the handwriting of the submitter.
Naturally, I started looking for my grandma's handwriting. I would know it if I saw it. And, I found it! I found her handwriting on pages 20 and 21. One recipe was for a rhubarb pie and the other was for chocolate cookies. Now, I remember very well those chocolate cookies sitting in the cookie jar on the counter in the big kitchen. But, I didn't remember the rhubarb pie.
One of my mother's sister had made this rhubarb pie for a family gathering. I asked her about the recipe for it. She said it was her mother's recipe! It all came together when I found the cookbook with the recipe in my grandma's handwriting. This pie has become a family favorite and we all can't wait until rhubarb is in season.
This pie is not the tart taste that is associated with rhubarb pie. The topping on this pie gives a certain sweetness to counteract the tartness.