Tuesday, 1 April 2014
Well, folks, what with having such a mild winter and a bit of early spring, quite a bit of the rhubarb in our garden is ready to begin harvesting now. Not bundles and bundles of it, but enough for me to indulge in a few rhubarb treats.
I love rhubarb season. I love rhubarb!! When I was a child, during rhubarb season, my mother used to give us each a stick of rhubarb and a small bowl of sugar. We would sit there sticking the end of the rhubarb into the sugar and biting it off on the sugared end. Oh boy. Was that ever mouth puckering good! You got the super sour tang of the rhubarb and a blast of sweet from the sugar. It was like a natural, "chemical free" pixie stick!
The other week I made a rhubarb pie and it was sooooo good. This weekend I decided to make a Rhubarb Clafoutis. Traditionally made with cherries, this is a French Dessert. It's like a batter pudding made with eggs, ground almonds, a bit of flour, sugar, fruit and cream. Technically a clafoutis made with fruit other than cherries it called a Flaugnarde, but why split hairs . . . this is a clafoutis.
Rich and sweet . . . with tender pieces of honey roasted rhubarb and lovely flecks of vanilla seeds througout, this is a fantastically scrummy dessert.
Of course Todd had to have his with some cream drizzled over top, and why not . . .
A little bit of an indulgence once in a while is a good thing. (So is the smell of your fingers after playing with the vanilla seeds. There's no calories in smell right??? Ok . . . so I did have an eensy peensy taste.)
Tender Spring Rhubarb is showcased in a very tasty dessert. The pinker rhubarb looks very nice done this way.
400g rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 2 inch lengths (3/4 lb)
1 vanilla pod
25g of butter (scant 2 TBS)
1 TBS runny honey (Acacia is nice)
50g of ground almonds (generous 1/2 cup)
2 TBS plain flour (all purpose)
100g caster sugar (1/2 cup fine white sugar)
2 medium free range eggs
2 medium free range egg yolks
250ml of double cream (a generous cup of heavy cream, a scant 9 fluid ounces)
icing sugar for dusting
Preheat the oven to 190*C/375*F/ gas mark 5. Arrange the rhubarb in a single layer in a shallow 1 litre baking dish. Split the vanilla pod and scrape out the seeds with the back of a knife. Dot the seeds over the rhubarb pieces. Dot with the butter as well and then drizzle the honey over top. Bake for 15 minutes in the heated oven, until tender.
Beat together the almonds, flour, sugar, eggs, egg yolks and cream, until you have a smooth mixture. Remove the roasted rhubarb from the oven. Pour the egg mixture over top. Bake for an additional 25 to 30 minutes until puffed and golden. Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately. Delicious!