A visit to the allotment this week resulted in the discovery that after all this lovely sunshine, the rhubarb has sprouted. Embracing all the seasonality of this crop, it made perfect sense to make the pink stalks the centre of this weeks blog.
It was very tempting to make a tart, sorbet, infused gin, crumble or cake - but sometimes simplicity wins.
In this case I wanted the first crop of rhubarb to be celebrating all its sour, fruity flavours and not distill it into something else, so the simple act of stewing it was a must.
Nothing fancy, a simple 10 minute process from start to finish, but all the intensity and yumminess of rhubarb. There are a few additional ingredients that I have added help to bring out the flavour and make it even more interesting.
80g golden caster sugar
1 large orange, zest and juice
3 balls of stem ginger, finely sliced
Wash and cut the rhubarb into 1cm slices and place into a large saucepan, along with all the other ingredients and 2 tablespoons of water.
Briefly stir to disperse the ingredients and then cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes, or until the fruit as softened but not totally broken down.
Taste to check for tartness, adding more caster sugar if needed.
Serve hot or cold
A classic accompaniment to rhubarb is some good old fashioned custard, but this stewed rhubarb is also delicious with ice cream, yoghurt (as I have used) or spooned over a vanilla cheesecake!
It will keep, covered in the fridge, for 3-4 days.