Did I ever mention that we joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)? This year, we decided to take the plunge into local produce. It was high time we put our money where our mouths are. After much debate, we chose to get fruit every other week. For me, fruit is one of those things that I never think to buy, even though I love it, so this was the perfect opportunity to get it. Who doesn't love fruit? Especially during the summer?
For our first week, we got a quart of strawberries and some rhubarb. Even though we lamented their appearance (their not being so sweet or delicate as those at the farmer's market), they tasted great. Seriously, we gobbled them up before there was any opportunity to think about doing anything yummy (i.e. make something with them). However, rhubarb demands a process (unless you're my friend Theresa, who apparently eats them dipped in sugar--YIKES), so I made compote. It was beautiful: vibrantly pink and soft and lovely. It shone like gems in a bowl. (Sorry about the lack of photo. Just try to trust me on this one.) But should you make it, don't let the softness fool you: rhubarb is bracing, even with a little sugar.
I highly recommend it.
Rhubarb Compote**, adapted from The Joy of Cooking
2 stalks fresh rhubarb
1 1/2 tablespoon sugar
1. Rinse the rhubarb and cut it into 1/2-inch pieces. If there are any leaves, discard them, as they are actually poisonous.
2. In a small bowl, sprinkle the sugar over the rhubarb and let it sit until the fruit starts to exude some juice, 20 minutes or so.
3. Put the rhubarb mixture into a small saucepan and simmer, covered, about 15 minutes. Cool. Serve with vanilla ice cream.
**NB: The original recipe makes a lot. This version makes a little.