15,000 miles, 70 classic Southern restaurants, and one 1959 Cadillac. Sounds like the perfect summer road trip to me. Last summer, Lt. Commander Morgan Murphy, a former Southern Living travel editor, was lucky enough to do just that, visiting his favorite restaurants and uncovering 150 recipes from their menus. The result, Southern Living Off the Eaten Path, is one part travel guide and one part cookbook, perfect for planning your next Southern road trip or for when you can’t travel farther than your kitchen. After scouring the recipes, I recently baked the Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie recipe from the Ham Shoppe in Valle Crucis, NC. It is the perfect combination of sweet and tart and would make an awesome picnic dessert. For the recipe, click through!
Since strawberries and rhubarb are at farmers markets across the country right now, there's no better time to try this recipe out. I was a little surprised to see that the original recipe used refrigerated piecrusts, so I swapped it out for a homemade crust from the recipe from Mom’s Apple Pie Company in Leesburg, Virginia, which is also included in the book.
Adapted from Southern Living Off the Eaten Path
1 cup sugar
5 Tbsp. cornstarch
1⁄4 tsp. ground nutmeg
3 cups fresh rhubarb slices
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
Piecrust from Mom’s Apple Pie Company's recipe
2 Tbsp. butter, cut into small pieces
1 large egg, beaten
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Whisk together first 3 ingredients in a large bowl until blended. Add rhubarb and strawberries, tossing to coat. Set aside.
2. Fit piecrust into a 9-inch pie plate. Spoon rhubarb mixture into prepared crust; dot with butter. Fold edges over and crimp. Brush edges of crust with beaten egg. For a how-to on how to make a lattice-top crust, click here. (It takes some practice, as you can see from the ragged edges on my pie.)
3. Bake for 1 hour. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Makes 8 servings.
In addition to recipes from the featured restaurants, Murphy also includes reviews of kitschy roadside attractions (my favorite), roadside stops for local products—from honey to barbeque sauce—and a list of annual food festivals to drop by during your travels. Southern Living Off the Eaten Path ($21.95; Oxmoor House) is out now.
Lyndsey Matthews is an online editorial assistant at Travel + Leisure.