Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Up to my Eyeballs in Rhubarb

So, I was doing pretty well with my "no-sugar" thing. I went a whole month without baking any sweets. Then we went to visit my
in-laws and somehow came home with a huge bag of rhubarb. I don't know why, but these things just tend to happen when visiting family. The thing with rhubarb is that it's so tart, you have to use lots of sugar with it (although I have heard that the newer varieties are less tart, but whatever). So you see, I had to bake sweets. It was a necessary evil.

I had so much rhubarb, it was enough for three different recipes! The first recipe I made was one of my own, only I tweaked and improved it. A few years ago I came up with my own recipe for Strawberry Rhubarb Bars. I decided to add blueberries (they were buy one, get one free at the store, so that was a given) and some cinnamon to the crust. The results were great, if I do say so myself! These bars feature a cinnamon shortbread crust, a fruity sweet-tart filling and a crunchy oat crumb topping. The best early summer has to offer!

Very Berry Rhubarb Bars
(This is not a low-FODMAP recipe)
by Dianne

2 cups flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
4 eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
4 cups diced rhubarb
2 cups sliced strawberries
1 cup blueberries
Crumb Topping:
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup oats
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 13x9-inch pan. For crust, combine the 2 cups flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Cut in the 1 cup unsalted butter until crumbs form. Press into bottom of pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
2.  For the filling, blend eggs, sugar, the 1/2 cup flour and salt. Fold in rhubarb, strawberries and blueberries. Carefully spread onto crust. For the crumb topping, combine the melted 1/4 cup butter, 1/2 cup flour, brown sugar, oats and cinnamon. Sprinkle the crumb topping on top of the rhubarb mixture. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until lightly brown and filling has set.
***Note: You can make a thinner bar by baking in a jelly-roll pan and reducing the baking time accordingly.

The other two rhubarb recipes I made were both from Allrecipes.com and they were both fantastic! I love rhubarb and have since I was a little girl. My mom grew it her garden and would make her famous Rhubarb Meringue Pie. The first was a cake: Rhubarb Spice Cake with Lemon Sauce. I had one piece and sent the rest with my husband to his work. It got rave reviews from his coworkers. They were pleasantly surprised at the flavor combination and thought it had just the right amount of lemon. The only thing I didn't like about the recipe was that it made too much lemon sauce and ended up throwing a lot of it out. I would recommend halving the sauce.

The third recipe was Frosted Rhubarb Cookies. I ended up taking these to a potluck and they were a big hit. I love the addition of the coconut. I decided to toast some coconut and sprinkle on top, which made them very pretty. I would have never thought to combine rhubarb with coconut!

So what is the verdict on rhubarb? It seems to be a very divisive ingredient. Either people love it or hate it. I love it! How about you?

1 comment:

  1. Yummy! Love rhubarb:) Unfortunately I have been up to my eyeballs with housework and a new job, so I haven't been to our local farm market to get some. I NEED to make those Very Berry Rhubarb Bars! Plus I am dying for strawberry rhubarb pie. Now I'm hungry...Thanks Dianne;)