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roasted rhubarb and custard

roasted rhubarb by The Culinary ChaseLocal rhubarb in the grocery stores and farmers’ markets usually signals spring has arrived but the exceptionally cold and lingering winter forced our spring plants to show up much later.  Last weekend I picked up my first local batch of rhubarb from the farmers’ market.  It always makes me think of the ginormous rhubarb plant my mom had in her garden.  As a kid, I remember trying to hide under its massive leaves – most probably playing hide and seek from my siblings.  Rhubarb is an acquired taste and is quite sour needing a bit of sugar to make it palatable.   It’s been around for centuries and is a vegetable (probably explains why it needs sugar!).   Rhubarb stew tends to be one of the popular ways to prepare it especially if you’re a novice cook.  Throw it in a pie with strawberries and you have a delicious summer dessert.  The thing is, though, rhubarb needs too much sugar for my liking and it becomes a stringy mess with a slight after bite.  So, what to do?

I’ve been a fan of roasted or grilled fruit for quite some time.  The heat brings out the natural sugars in fruit without turning them into mush and the fruit needs minimal sugar.  You can roast or grill just about any kind of fruit.  Roasted rhubarb takes little time to cook and can be eaten on its own or added to granola, yogurt, ice cream, made into a fool, or tossed in with other roasted fruit.

Serves 2 to 4
1 lb. fresh rhubarb stalks, ends and tops trimmed
1/4 cup maple syrup

Easy Custard

2 cups milk
2 egg yolks
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch (can use flour)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350f. Roughly chop rhubarb into one-inch pieces. In a large baking tray add chopped rhubarb and drizzle maple syrup over (you may need to add a bit more but don’t smother the fruit). Gently toss with your hands and smooth out so that the rhubarb is in a single layer. If you pile on top of each other you’ll end up steaming the rhubarb.  Roast for 20 minutes or until tender.

rhubarb and maple syrup

rhubarb with maple syrup

To make the custard, heat milk in a saucepan until small bubbles form around the edge. Remove from heat. In a bowl beat egg yolks with sugar and cornstarch until smooth. Whisk in hot milk then transfer back into the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce becomes slightly thickened. Cook a minute or two longer then remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

roasted rhubarb and maple syrup

Roasting keeps the shape of the rhubarb and releases its own juice to mix with the maple syrup.

While still warm, remove rhubarb from baking tray and divide into bowls.  Drizzle with warm custard sauce and serve immediately.

The Culinary Chase’s Note: When selecting rhubarb, try to choose stems that have more red than green. Mostly green stalks will definitely be more sour.  Enjoy!

roasted rhubarb and custard
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
I’ve been a fan of roasted or grilled fruit for quite some time. The heat brings out the natural sugars in fruit without turning them into mush and the fruit needs minimal sugar. You can roast or grill just about any kind of fruit. Roasted rhubarb takes little time to cook and can be eaten on its own or added to granola, yogurt, ice cream, made into a fool, or tossed in with other roasted fruit.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. fresh rhubarb stalks, ends and tops trimmed
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • Easy Custard
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 egg yolks
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch (can use flour)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350f. Roughly chop rhubarb into one-inch pieces. In a large baking tray add chopped rhubarb and drizzle maple syrup over (you may need to add a bit more but don’t smother the fruit). Gently toss with your hands and smooth out so that the rhubarb is in a single layer. If you pile on top of each other you’ll end up steaming the rhubarb. Roast for 20 minutes or until tender.
  2. To make the custard, heat milk in a saucepan until small bubbles form around the edge. Remove from heat. In a bowl beat egg yolks with sugar and cornstarch until smooth. Whisk in hot milk then transfer back into the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce becomes slightly thickened. Cook a minute or two longer then remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
  3. While still warm, remove rhubarb from baking tray and divide into bowls. Drizzle with warm custard sauce and serve immediately.
Notes
The Culinary Chase’s Note: When selecting rhubarb, try to choose stems that have more red than green. Mostly green stalks will definitely be more sour. Enjoy!

 

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