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Nourish

The Best Rhubarb Dessert — No Strawberries Needed

By Heifer International May 6, 2019

Arguably the best thing about spring is the delicious fruits and vegetables that are in season. But sometimes it's hard to know what to do with the bounty. 

Rhubarb is such a sweet veggie. Photo by Peter Drach (aka PeteDragomir) via Flickr.
Rhubarb is such a sweet veggie. Photo by Peter Drach (aka PeteDragomir) via Flickr.

Take rhubarb for example. Other than strawberry-rhubarb pie, can you think of a dish that uses it? Long relegated as strawberry's sidekick, it's also best in spring, particularly between April and June. And really, this vegetable should be the star of the show when it comes to desserts. Tart when raw, but much sweeter when baked, it’s is the perfect filling for an oatmeal crisp. Good thing we have just the recipe for you.

Here’s what’ you’ll need:

• 2 pounds rhubarb, diced
• ¼-½ cup sugar
• 3 tablespoons corn starch
• ¾ cup butter
• ½ cup brown sugar
• ½ cup flour
• 1 ½ cups oatmeal

Once everything is prepped, preheat oven to 325 degrees. Fill a 9x13 pan with the rhubarb, sugar and corn starch and toss together. In a saucepan, melt butter and sugar together. Once sugar is melted, remove pan from heat and incorporate flour. Mix oatmeal in with the sugar and flour mixture and spread over the top of the fruit. Bake for 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the fruit is tender.

NOTE: Rhubarb leaves are toxic! Eat only the stems. You can substitute apples for some of the rhubarb to give extra sweetness. For a vegan version, use coconut oil in place of butter.

And to make the most of this season’s haul, either from your CSA or your local farmers market, here are a few tips for buying and storing rhubarb, thanks to thekitchen.com

  • Firm, crisp stalks: Look for stalks that are firm, crisp and blemish free.
  • Fresh leaves: If the leaves are attached, be sure they look fresh and not wilted.
  • April through June: Although you can find rhubarb from as early as mid-spring and throughout the summer, prime season runs from April to June.
  • Store unwashed, in the refrigerator: Store rhubarb unwashed, in the refrigerator, for up to one week.

 

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