2014-05-23 / Columns

Cooking on Purpose

Time is right for some rhubarb recipes
By Connie Wendell
Special to the Post

I see that my neighbor’s rhubarb is up as I walk by each day. The rhubarb is one of the first to brave our spring. And this spring it has had to be braver than usual.

I have included some recipes this time that feature rhubarb. Now you will be ready to cook when you see it in the market or in your back yard.

Old fashioned rhubarb pie

Pastry for a two-crust pie; 4 cups unpeeled rhubarb, cut in 1-inch pieces; 1 ½ cup sugar; 6 tablespoons flour; dash of salt; and 2 tablespoons butter.

Line a 9-inch pie plate with the pastry, having a half inch overhanging edge. Mix two tablespoons of the flour with two tablespoons of the sugar and sprinkle over the pastry.

Heap the rhubarb over this mixture. Mix the remaining flour and sugar together and sprinkle over the rhubarb. Add a dash of salt and dot with butter. Adjust top crust over this and bring lower crust up over top crust and flute edges. Cut vents in the crust. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes and then 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Place pie on rack to cool.

Rhubarb crisp

Four cups rhubarb; 2 cups sugar; 2 tablespoons flour; ½ teaspoon ginger; and ½ teaspoon salt.

Cut rhubarb into inch-long pieces. Mix rhubarb with sugar, flour, salt and ginger. Place in shallow baking pan.

Cover rhubarb with following topping:

One cup brown sugar; 1 cup flour; and ½ cup butter or margarine.

Mix the topping with a pastry blender or two knives. Spread over rhubarb.

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream.

Stewed rhubarb

One pound (2 cups) rhubarb; ½ cup sugar; 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind; and ¼ cup water.

Wash and trim the rhubarb, peeling it if it is tough. Cut into 1-inch pieces and put in a heavy bottomed saucepan.

Add sugar, lemon rind and water. Cover and cook gently for 5-7 minutes. This is great over ice cream or angel food cake.

Rhubarb Betty

Two pounds trimmed rhubarb stalks in 2-inch pieces; ¼ cup water; 1 ½ cups sugar; 2 cups homemade dry bread crumbs; 6 tablespoons butter, melted; 2 cups fresh sliced strawberries, sweetened; and heavy cream or whipped cream.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the rhubarb in a saucepan with the water and sugar, cover and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Set aside. Put the bread crumbs in a bowl with the melted butter and toss to coat all the crumbs.

Spread the cooked rhubarb in an 8-inch square baking dish. Sprinkle the crumbs evenly over the top and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the crumbs are browned.

Just before serving put a large spoonful of sliced strawberries in a dessert dish, then place a serving of warm Rhubarb Betty beside it. Serve with cream or whipped cream.

Enjoy the rhubarb and until next time, keep Cooking on Purpose.

Connie Wendell can be reached at conniewendell27@gmail.com.

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