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rhubarb - Wikipedia Commons

rhubarb – Wikipedia Commons

Living in a few different parts of the world, some things just don’t exist in the local cuisine, even if they could. For instance, rhubarb. Growing up in north central North America, rhubarb was so plentiful, I remember picking it in the fields nearby with my cousin, taking it home, dipping it sugar and eating it raw. I can’t imagine doing that today! Tastes change in adulthood, like all of a sudden one day you wake up and like bleu cheese and avocados.

Rhubarb isn’t very common here in Israel and only appears seasonally and in a few special fruit stores. I still love it, but cooked only! It arrives here in large packages in the fruit markets so I make it at once or two batches. Like celery, it keeps well.

I usually like the flavor combination of rhubarb with strawberries so these two recipes feature both which are available at the same season.

5 cups diced rhubarb
2 cups strawberries
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 tsp. salt

Rhubarb-Strawberry Trifle

rhubarb-strawberry trifle

rhubarb-strawberry trifle

8 oz. mascarpone
1 cup whipping cream
4 ounces of philly cream cheese
1 tsp. of unflavored gelatin
1 tsp. cinnamon

For both recipes, I began with a large measuring Pyrex mixing bowl (wish I’d taken photos) and dice up about 5 cups of rhubarb. Add to that about two cups of strawberries, 7 cups total. Have a minimum of 5 cups of fruit for a standard pie plate. Add 1 cup of sugar and 1/4 cup cornstarch 1 1/2 tsp. sea salt. Mix all together until all the fruit slices are covered with the dry mix.

For compote you will also need:
1 tbsp. lemon peel finely diced
1 cup dry red wine
1 tsp. cinnamon

Take out two cups of the fruit mixture and place in a saucepan with 1 cup of dry red wine and 1 tbsp. of finely minced lemon peel and add cinnamon. heat mixture in saucepan until rhubarb becomes completely softened and mixture is thickened. The wine deepens the flavor and gives a beautiful burgundy color to the compote. Cool in fridge completely before trifle making.

In a small microwave-safe bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over 2 tablespoons of water. Let stand until softened, about 5 minutes. Microwave at high power for 5 seconds, just until the gelatin is melted. Whip the whipped cream until stiff peaks form.

Mix mascarpone and cream cheese together completely with a mixer. Add dissolved gelatin and water. Whip 1 cup of whipped cream until stiff peaks form. For cream mixture fold the mascarpone and cream cheese mixture in with whipped cream. Your trifle base is ready. Layer in a serving bowl, preferably galss, with cooled rhubarb-strawberry compote.

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Double piecrust recipe:
1 cup cold butter
1 tsp. sea salt
2 1/2 cups flour
6 tablespoons of ice water

For Crust: I put all the ingredients except ice water in a food processor with main blade. Mixture should turn into a pea-like butter/flour mix. Add ice water slowly. If mix doesn’t hold together gently add tablespoons of ice water until it does. Take out and divide into two balls and roll out one ball for pie crust bottom. Line pie plate.

Pour in 5 cups of fruit mix above. Roll out top pie layer and place over fruit crimping all the edges. Pierce the top of the curst to avoid bubbling the crust. I usually add a design, this time was the day’s date, 3/7.
Bake at 350/185 c. oven until crust is browned, about an hour.

rhubarb strawberry pie - dated 3/7

rhubarb strawberry pie – dated 3/7