Spring is by far my favorite season. The tulips, crocuses and hyacinth are in full bloom. We have an abundance of exotic mushrooms, asparagus, the sweetest of sweet peas and of course rhubarb. Man oh man, do we have a lot of rhubarb. While I have planted my first vegetable garden here in our new house, the previous owners must have loved rhubarb, like, loved because we currently have 4 huge rhubarb plants just waiting to be eaten. Luckily for us, we love rhubarb too. My Husband likes it so much, he breaks the stalks off and eats it right there in the garden. I'm looking forward to trying new recipes with the rhubarb but I have to pace myself. There is plenty of rhubarb and plenty of time to get creative, the plants grow like weeds! For the first harvest, I wanted to kick it comfort style, aka, rhubarb crumble.
Perhaps one of the simplest of desserts, the crumble can be made with about 10 minutes of prep time. Serve a warm crumble with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and you've got a winner on your hands, every time. Seriously, who doesn't like a fruit crumble? I mean, what's not to like...a buttery crust on top of tart, juicy delicious fruit. It's like pie made easy. And I like me some easy.
Recipe from Recipezaar:
2 lbs rhubarb, chopped into 1/2 in pieces
1/4 cup sugar (superfine)
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cornstarch
FOR THE CRUMBLE TOPPING:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and diced
3 tablespoons vanilla sugar (can substitute ordinary sugar)
3 tablespoons brown sugar
Place a large baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 375 degrees. (The baking sheet will be used to place your cake pan on to catch any drippings in case the filling boils over.) Place all of the filing ingredients in a saucepan, stir together and heat over low-med heat for about 5 minutes or until the rhubarb is glossy and everything has melted together. Transfer the rhubarb mixture to a buttered 9" cake pan. Make the crumble topping by placing the flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Stir to combine. Add the butter to the flour and using either a pastry cutter or your fingers, combine the butter and flour until you reach a texture of soft crumbs. (This could easily be done in a food processor as well, pulsing the butter and flour together.) Stir the sugars into the flour using a fork. Spread the crumble topping evenly over the fruit mixture, covering all of the fruit. Place the cake pan on the baking sheet and bake for 35-45 minutes. When the topping is golden brown, remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.
Friday, May 1, 2009