Rhubarb, which looks like crimson celery, has a short season so stock up while you can. It freezes beautifully; just store the stalks in a heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag. You can use fresh or frozen rhubarb for these custard bars. We actually preferred unthawed frozen rhubarb.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
9 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups 1% low-fat milk
3 large eggs
5 cups (1/2-inch) sliced fresh or frozen rhubarb (unthawed)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup (4 ounces) block-style fat-free cream cheese
1/2 cup (4 ounces) block-style 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed
Mint sprigs (optional)
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°.
To prepare crust, lightly spoon 1 1/2 cups flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt in a bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Press mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
To prepare filling, lightly spoon 1/3 cup flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine 1/3 cup flour and 1 1/2 cups sugar in a large bowl; add milk and eggs, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Stir in rhubarb. Pour rhubarb mixture over crust. Bake at 350° for 40 minutes or until set. Cool to room temperature.
To prepare topping, place 1/2 cup sugar, cheeses, and vanilla in a bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Gently fold in whipped topping; spread evenly over baked custard. Cover and chill at least 1 hour. Garnish with mint sprigs, if desired.
This recipe really tastes great. Best use of rhubarb I know. BUT I cannot figure out a reasonable substitute for the nasty "nondairy whipped topping" (i.e. chemical crap). Regular whipped cream won't work because it doesn't hold its structure. Any thoughts??
This recipe has garnered me high praise, so I give it five+ stars. I won't use the trans-fat-ful whipped toppings, so I substitute whipped heavy cream. It results in a slightly looser consistency for the top layer, but not by much, and, adequately chilled, it seems to be fine. Once, I used vanilla coffee creamer, the real dairy type, and that seemed to hold it's texture slightly better- though I need to use it again to make sure that wasn't just my hopeful imagination. Trans fats are so bad for us that I just can't bear to use the non-dairy topping. Blech!
I can't say I'm really impressed with this recipe. I thought I would love it, especially after all of the rave reviews. What's not to love?! Cream cheese, rhubarb... I did think the crust was nice, not soggy at all, which is great. But overall they just didn't taste like much of anything. If you want to showcase the rhubarb, I don't think this is the recipe. Maybe add some cinnamon to the custard layer to enhance the flavor? I might try that next time.
This was sooooooooooooo delicious. I subsituted frozen strawberries for the rhubarb (my preference), and it came out delicious. The crust was excellent.(This would make a great tart crust aswell). The topping was also amazing! I didn't think mixing cool whip and fat free cream cheese would be soooo delicious. I want to eat them all. Ahhhhhhh!
This is an awesome recipe I have been making ever since it was published years ago. To make it easier for me I use the pulse on the food processor to mix the crust. I have substituted marscapone when out of cream cheese (which resulted in higher fat) but it is always, always delicious!
I like the fact the crust is a little on the firmer side as this sits in the refrigerator a few days now there is just two of us - and the crust holds up very well!
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