A: After the long winter, I look forward to the early harvests every year. Apart from asparagus and some onions, there isn’t much in the garden at this time of year. So the first harvest of rhubarbs is definitely something to look forward to.
While we were huddled in warm clothes, preferring the indoors more than the cold and frosty outside, these stalks have grown over the late winter months. By late March or early April the rhubarbs are ready. These stalks are amazing. The more you cut, the more they grow. Till about end July we get a steady supply of garden fresh rhubarbs every two weeks.
This year I wanted to make something special with the first harvest. So here’s the crumble recipe I came up with. It is a bit indulgent with some ground almonds and a generous portion of Port. But hey, it’s worth every bit for a celebratory occasion!
Ingredients for the body:
500 gm rhubarbs chopped into chunks the size of your thumb
100 gm golden caster sugar
5 tbsp Port
For the topping:
140 gm self-raising flour
85 gm butter, chilled
50 gm light brown muscovado sugar
50 gm ground almonds
Tip the rhubarb into a saucepan with the sugar and Port. Cover and simmer on a very low heat for 15 mins, adding more sugar if you want. When soft (but still holding its shape) and sweet enough, transfer the rhubarb into a medium baking dish leaving all the lovely juices mixed with port on the saucepan.
Add the ground almonds to the saucepan and allow it to soak in all the juices. Transfer this mix on the baking dish uniformly over the rhubarbs.
Heat the oven to 180°C.
To make the topping, rub the flour and butter together with your fingers until you have a soft, crumbly topping. Now add the sugar, mixing together with your hands. Scatter the topping over the rhubarb and bake for 30 mins or until golden brown on top.
Voila! The rhubarb crumble is ready. Enjoy it slightly warm or let it rest and enjoy it cold. Either way you won’t be disappointed.