Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Rhubarb Compote

Today we'll be making the second part of the mascarpone and rhubarb ice-cream.
There is a third part (a caramel sauce) which I'll hopefully get to tomorrow and then we can assemble things.

Rhubarb is one of those vegetables that make even the rainiest day seem filled with sunshine. 
Perhaps that's because you know by the time you see rhubarb in the shops (unless it's the amazingly cute forced rhubarb you get in the UK) spring is in full swing and you won't have to wait for summer much longer.
Back in St Andrews, we had a rhubarb plant in the garden which meant whenever I felt like making compote or a tart, all I had to do was fight my way through wild flowers and weeds and was then rewarded with fresh, juicy, bright pink rhubarb stalks.
It also meant whenever I had no money left at the end of the month the chances of me using rhubarb would go up exponentially.
Now I have to walk to the farmers market (which, luckily, doesn't take much longer than cutting the stalks myself).
Anyhow, this compote is really nice by itself as well.
Or spooned over vanilla ice-cream, or with custard, or with yoghurt...the options are endless.
This is the very basic version of rhubarb compote that I make, if I  want something more colourful, I add raspberries like in the version for the Raspberry and Rhubarb Tartlets.

Rhubarb Compote
500g Rhubarb, cut into 1.5 cm pieces
100g Sugar

Mix the rhubarb and sugar in a heavy bottomed pot, cover and heat over the lowest possible heat.
Give the rhubarb 15 minutes or so to 'sweat'  and once the bottom of the pot is covered in rhubarb juice you can turn the heat up to medium high.
Cook until the rhubarb is soft but is still holding its shape. This could be anything from 5 to 15 minutes depending on how fresh/young your rhubarb is, so don't go running away to watch some old episodes of Vampire Diaries or whatever you like to watch.
Once the rhubarb is cooked through, remove it from the heat and let it cool slightly.
If you're using this for the ice-cream extravaganza, let the compote cool completely and then refrigerate it for a few more hours.
All right, I hope you have a fabulous evening! With lots of amazing food!

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