Last year I transplanted my Rhubarb crowns to a new location, and I didn't pick any, so that it would have time to settle in and build up its strength. This year though, I feel able to pick some.
A couple of days ago I picked the eight stems you see pictured here. As is very evident from the photos, I have two Rhubarb plants and they are of different varieties. I think they are "Timperley Early" and "Victoria", but I wouldn't stake my life on it. Which one is which, I really don't know!
As I'm sure all experienced gardeners know, when you pick Rhubarb it is supposed to be best to remove the whole stem by giving it a sharp tug, not by cutting it. Don't ask me why!
This is the way I like to eat Rhubarb: remove and discard the leaves (they are poisonous). Wash the stalks and cut them into pieces about an inch long. Place them in a large, non-metallic dish, and add a few pieces of peeled fresh ginger, a tablespoonful of sugar (or sugar-substitute for the diabetics), and the juice of one large orange. After squeezing the orange, I bung the pieces of skin into the dish too - they all add flavour and are easily removed after cooking.
Cover the dish with foil and cook in the oven at 130C for about an hour, testing occasionally to see if the Rhubarb is cooked. Fresh Rhubarb cooks at varying rates, and you don't want it to go too mushy. It's cooked when the tip of a pointed knife slides in easily.
When cooked, allow the Rhubarb to cool, remove the pieces of ginger and the orange skins and then decant it into another (preferably lidded) receptacle of some sort and put it in the fridge. It will keep for several days if you allow it to. Actually it is best very soon after cooking, when it is just warm. Serve spooned over a couple of scoops of vanilla ice cream, or with a spoonful of Cornish clotted cream.
I love rhubarb. I mostly cook compotes, but I will certainly try it your way too.ReplyDelete
Yum! It looks as though the rhubarb retains its colour better when cooked like this, Mark. I've always cooked mine on the top of the stove and it goes a bit mushy. I'll try your method as I have quite a few stems to pick. Btw, did you move your crowns in autumn or spring? I need to move one of my plants and fear I've missed the boat for this year!ReplyDelete
I moved my Rhubarb in the Autumn, Caro, but to be honest, it was a matter of necessity, not choice. I didn't think it would survive if I left it where it was.Delete
BTW, my photos are of the Rhubarb in its raw state. It goes a lot duller in colour when cooked.Delete
It's interesting that you use such a small quantity of sugar - most recipes I've seen have much more. Perhaps it's a North American thing.ReplyDelete
The amount of sugar depends on 2 things - your preference for sweetness, and the natural sharpness or sweetness of the Rhubarb. mine is evidently fairly sweet!Delete
Our Timperley Early looks more like your redder one. My guess is that pulling the stalks helps prevent rotting,ReplyDelete
I think the one on the left, the red one is the Timperley Early, it looks the same as our's.ReplyDelete