Roasted Rhubarb Vinaigrette

Last week, I had a few stalks of rhubarb leftover after a crumble-for-two. Before they got lost and rubbery beneath the early-CSA kale, arugula, and spinach in the crisper, I transformed them into a bright and tangy topping for all that early-CSA kale, arugula, and spinach in the crisper. Those sturdy, deep, dark greens demand…

#crumblebrag

Behold, the humble crumble. Not much to look at. Kinda slumpy, really. But this rhubarb-rye dessert’s beauty—warming and comforting and rich and heady with the cool spring’s first harvest—can’t adequately be captured by the camera. For that, you need your nose. And a spoon. Rhubarb-Rye Crumble Sized for two generous portions (with maybe a little…

Rhubarb & Chard (& Mustard Seeds & Sausage)

Okay, so it’s not exactly “Hey, you got your chocolate in my peanut butter!” territory, but it’s close. Over high heat, the rhubarb breaks down quickly, dissolving into a sauce that slicks the dark, tannic greens; those tannins—and the rhubarb’s citrusy tang—work to balance the rich sausage; the mustard seeds weigh in with a little pop of…

Blubarb Jam: A Sweet and Slippery Slope

If you’re new to making fruit preserves, blueberries are the perfect gateway. Widely available, rich in their own pectin, and relatively inexpensive, blues are a small-batch-friendly fruit. And with no hulling and no pitting, your prep is pretty much limited to a quick rinse and a scan for stray stems and bum berries. Lovely when sugared…

Hand-Me-Down Muffins, Share-Worthy Curd

Kim Severson’s lovely and poignant Mother’s Day piece in last week’s Food Section sent me sorting through my stash of handwritten, handed-down recipes for one of my favorite fruit-spread vehicles, my mom’s Vanilla Muffins. Fragrant, moist, and simple, these were not muffins you studded with fruit; these were muffins you smeared with fruit. With, say, Aunt Harriet‘s peach butter, made…

Honey-Roasted Rhubarb

The fine folks at Greensgrow Farms recently asked me to guest blog for them on how my garden weathered our extreme winter.  I lost four long-established climbing roses, every single perennial herb except some scraggly sage, about half my grapes, and the real heartbreaker: my prolific fig tree. On the bright side, well, my garden’s regained a bright…

Have Pie, Will Travel

We are pie people, my family. Notwithstanding the perennial, nephew-driven, auntie-fueled, Northwoods debate about which permutation of my mother’s cupcakes reigns supreme (yellow cake, chocolate frosting—duh), we generally opt for pie over cake. I make a solid two-cruster (peach-blueberry is my go-to), but in my head, my finished product never can compare to my mother’s…

“Junebug” ice cream

The thought of making ice cream has always evoked for me the smells and sounds of my grandparents’ cellar in Marseilles, Illinois. Even when I use my Cuisinart doohickey with the canister you keep in the freezer so it’s ready when you’re ready, my brain conjures up sharp, minerally rock salt and wet burlap sack,…

Swap-Box Hero: Strawbarb Preserves

One of the perks of being a site host is that you get to scavenge through the swap box at the end of pick-up day. This week, that meant we staff got to divvy up bundles of underloved endive and rhubarb. Thanks, but no thanks on more greens—I got plenty in my own sharebox. But…

Keep it Simple, Syrup

This morning, I made a little rhubarb simple syrup; tonight, I’m having a little cocktail moment. Rhubarb simple syrup about 4 cups chopped rhubarb 1-1/2 cups organic sugar 1-1/2 cups water Simmer all three ingredients in a saucepan for about 15 minutes, or until the rhubarb is fully soft. Pour the hot liquid and fruit…