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Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Recipe: Rhubarb Crumble

I picked up two bunches of gorgeous rhubarb at the Growers Markets on Saturday morning. After lugging them through the Snapper, Spice and Rice festival and then dozing off on the train on the way home, any wistful intentions to make shortcrust pastry for rhubarb pie that evening went straight out the window.

I'm a lazy cook at the best of times which is why any rhubarb I purchase inevitably ends up in an easy-as rhubarb crumble. It's got sticky caramelised rhubarb, crunchy crumble topping and it takes all of five minutes to prepare before it goes into the oven. Sold!

On a whim I added cinnamon and orange zest to the rhubarb to give a different depth of flavours. Cinnamon always works well and I was pleased with the way the orange added a background subtlety of sweetness which wasn't overly cloying.

Easy Rhubarb Crumble

2 bunches rhubarb
1-1.5 cups brown sugar
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup plain flour
90g butter, softened
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2tsp orange zest, chopped finely

Wash and chop two bunches of rhubarb into one-inch (2.5cm) lengths. Remember that rhubarb leaves are poisonous (they contain oxalic acid) and should not be eaten.

Throw the rhubarb into a baking dish with 1/2 a cup of brown sugar. If you prefer yours sweeter you may wish to add another 1/4-1/2 cup of sugar. You may also want to add a tablespoon or two of water if you like your fruit wet. I didn't add any extra water giving the rhubarb a stickier thicker consistency.

Add the ground cinnamon and orange rind. Give a quick stir to distribute the sugar evenly and flatten the mixture slightly.

In a separate bowl combine 1/2 cup of sugar with the oats, flour and the softened butter. Get your hands dirty and rub the butter in until you have a bowlful of different-sized clumps of goodness.

Distribute the crumble evenly over the rhubarb mixture.

Bake at 190C for 45min-1hour depending on how brown you like your topping.

Serve hot or cold with a big scoop of vanilla bean ice cream, or warmed custard for all the traditionalists.

1. A half-cup of chopped walnuts, almonds or macadamia nuts can give an extra crunch to crumble toppings
2. Apple rhubarb crumbles can reduce the tartness level of straight rhubarb if desired.

7 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Anonymous on 11/09/2005 11:59:00 pm


  • At 11/10/2005 10:14 am, Blogger Nic said…

    My, but that does look good, A.G. It definately makes me wish that I could find some rhubarb around here. But I think that crumble will just have to make an appearance at my table sometime soon regardless.

  • At 11/10/2005 11:13 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    mmm, rhubarb, that crumble looks great! I'd forgotten how much I liked rhubarb until i had it in an entree at est. a couple of weeks ago.

    it was a tranche of duck foie gras with poached rhubarb, sauternes jelly and toasted brioche. This was served with a VERY tasty glass of 2003 dr loosen urziger wurzgarten riesling kabinet - mosel saar ruwer.

    Yes, I am boasting.

  • At 11/10/2005 1:22 pm, Blogger deborah said…

    Looks fab. I love a giood crumble - and the best is that it can whipped up at a moments notice when people decide to drop it. I will try this with macadamias soon :)

  • At 11/10/2005 4:24 pm, Blogger Veruca Salt said…

    Mmmmmm. Looks good. Was the Rhubarb very tart? Can you people I have never (really) tasted it before?

  • At 11/11/2005 8:10 am, Blogger M-H said…

    Tangelos are good with rhubarb too - and in season at the same time! I once made the most divine tangelo and rhubarn icecream.

  • At 11/11/2005 10:32 pm, Blogger Reid said…

    Hi AG,

    OK...I've never had rhubarb crumble, but I have heard that it is really tart. If that's so, I know that I would like it. I think I need to try this soon.

  • At 11/12/2005 10:29 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yum... I've never had a 'straight' rhubarb crumble either, can you believe it? I've had apple-rhubarb and strawberry-rhubarb, but I think one of these days I need to gather up my courage to spend a little time with rhubarb by itself!


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