Rhubarb! It's everywhere these days. Filling local farmer's market tables & in full bloom in many neighbourhood gardens. If you're lucky enough to have Rhubarb in your yard, you better use it! Or at least give it away to the Grandma on your block. I hate when food goes to waste and Grandmas always know what to do with random ingredients. Something about wartime era scarcity I think, but I digress. Back to Rhubarb!
When we moved into our 1st home in Bloor West Village last summer we found an abundance of Rhubarb. It hadn't been cared for and was in pretty rough shape. Since Rhubarb is a perennial vegetable I knew I would have a chance to bring it back to it's full glory the following year, and that's exactly what I've done.
When it started appearing in early spring we watched with anticipation. I read all about how to tend to Rhubarb (more info here) and was super excited when it was ready to harvest. In our zone Rhubarb can usually be harvested starting in June and continues producing until mid to late sumer depending on the season. It's ideal to harvest when stalks are 12" - 18" long and 1/2" -1" thick. The colour can range from celery green to deep red and does not determine ripeness, which I thought was interesting.
To harvest, grab the stalk at the base and twist while pulling. This will break off the stalk at the root. Don't forget to cut off and dispose of the leaves outside in your yard waste bag. They are poisonous and should never be ingested. That's why rhubarb stalks are sold without leaves at markets and in grocery stores.
Harvesting your Rhubarb will encourage continued growth. If not harvested, stalks will become weak & rot :(
Once you have your beautiful harvest of Rhubarb you'll need to make something. I chose this Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler from Home to Heather (full recipe below with minor adaptations). We're not a GF family, but I always enjoy making recipes healthier and since many of my friends and family are GF, it's a nice bonus of this recipe. The recipe can also easily be made vegan by substituting the egg for ground chia seeds & water, the butter for coconut oil & the cream for almond or coconut milk.
This recipe is quick to prepare and absolutely delicious. Top it with a little ice cream or fresh whipped cream and you have a perfect summer treat. I forgot to get a photo of the finished product the 1st time, but that's ok. It was so good that I had to make it a second time...in 1 week ;) Yum!
Check out The Old Farmers Almanac if you're interested in planting some rhubarb or need to learn how to care for yours. It's a great resource for all gardeners.
Gluten-Free Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler
3 cups rhubarb
2 cups strawberries
1/2 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
1/2 cup oat flour (or regular flour)
I cup oats
1/2 cup almond flour (or regular flour)
1 Tbsp coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup melted butter (or coconut oil)
2 Tbsp cream (or almond milk)
1 tsp vanilla (or inside of 1 fresh vanilla bean, optional. I added this because I love fresh vanilla)
Preheat oven to 350F
Chop fruit and toss in a large bowl with sugar and flour until combined
Transfer filling to ungreased 8x8 baking dish
Mix dry topping ingredients together
Add in egg, butter & cream
Mix until combined and spoon over filling like drop cookies (don't smooth out, just dollop on)
Bake for approximately 45 mins until filing is bubbling and topping is nicely browned