Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
When I was a little girl my favorite way to eat rhubarb was to snap off a stick in the back yard, run into the kitchen and dip the end into the sugar bowl, repeating the dipping process as needed to coat each tart and chewy bite with granular sweetness. In a post-Seinfeld world I risk being labeled a dreaded double dipper. And I admit up front, it's true.
I double dipped and triple dipped and lived to tell the tale.
Beyond childhood I never bothered much with rhubarb, except for tasting the occasional strawberry rhubarb crisp at someone else's family picnic. I was never much a fan of it cooked. Stewing and baking seemed to rob it of its charms, mocking my memory of those sugar coated crisp and sour stalks. The mush in the bottom of all those Pyrex baking pans was a sorry excuse for rhubarb, I thought. So recreating a rhubarb crisp recipe for living gluten-free was never glowing brightly on my cooking radar screen. It was never even the faintest of blips. I've been blogging for four rhubarb seasons now and haven't felt inspired to develop a recipe. Until now.
Why now, I've no idea. Perhaps it's because we're stuck out here in the desert, with nary a garden or bursting rhubarb patch in sight. Just rolling hills of crusty earth studded with brittle pinon and juniper trees, the oddball cholla, or tuft of tenacious sage. The words green and leafy don't exactly come to mind when you walk the dirt road to the arroyo.
So when I spotted a few lonely stalks of rhubarb in a basket at Whole Foods in Santa Fe- ruby red and sexy in their glistening rhubarb goodness- I thought, Why not attempt a strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe?
And because I'd asked myself out loud my husband said, You do realize you just asked three stalks of rhubarb if you should make them into a crisp?
Well, yeah, I shrugged back. I talk to my fruit.
|I love the tart tang of balsamic in this gluten-free crisp recipe.|
Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp Recipe with Balsamic Vinegar
Balsamic vinegar cuts the sugary sweetness of the usual sugar and strawberry rhubarb combo and adds a depth of savory tart flavor. Start with one tablespoon and taste test; add a little more if you desire. The balsamic gives this fruit crisp depth and richness.Ingredients:
3-4 stalks of rhubarb, trimmed, chopped1 quart fresh organic strawberries, hulled, cut up1-2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, to taste (start with one)3/4 cup organic light brown sugar1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt1/2 teaspoon organic ground cinnamon1/4 teaspoon nutmeg1 tiny pinch ground cloves- tiny- I mean it!1 tablespoon arrowroot starchFor the topping:1/2 cup organic brown sugar1/4 cup organic buckwheat flour1/4 cup sorghum flour1/4 cup arrowroot starch1 teaspoon xanthan gum1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt1 teaspoon organic ground cinnamon2-3 tablespoons coconut oil or Spectrum Organic ShorteningInstructions:
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Lightly grease an 8x10-inch baking or gratin dish.In a bowl, combine the rhubarb, strawberries, 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves; stir to combine. Taste test and add 1 more tablespoon balsamic vinegar if you like it more tart. When the sauce hits the right notes of tart and sweet, stir in the arrowroot starch and set aside.In a separate bowl combine the brown sugar, buckwheat, sorghum, arrowroot, xanthan gum, sea salt and cinnamon. Drop in dabs of the Spectrum Organic Shortening in pieces, and using your hands scoop and rub the mixture between your palms until it becomes a coarse sandy meal. Add more shortening if you need it.Spoon the fruit mixture into the prepared baking dish. Add the crumb topping, leaving some space around the edges for the juice to simmer and pop.Bake in the center of a preheated oven until the fruit is tender, and the crisp topping is golden brown; it should bubble around the edges. Mine took about 25 minutes. I try not to overcook my fruit crisps because I don't care for them if they're mushy.Serve warm. A soft scoop of creamy coconut ice cream is entirely optional.Serves 6.