well, we made it! it’s the end of april, and it’s FINALLY starting to feel like spring outside. i’ve taken my winter coat to the cleaners for its pre-hibernation cleaning (a white coat + a winter full of riding the new york city subway = eww), and have relegated all of my boots to their rightful place in the back of my closet. i’ve also stopped dreading any activity that requires going outside, and sunglasses have become a daily accessory. it’s a great feeling.
in addition to all of the clothing-related changes, another great thing that happens at the beginning of spring is that rhubarb comes into season. every time i walk through the produce section of a supermarket lately, i notice stalks of fresh rhubarb among the vegetables (even though we treat it as a fruit), shouting out in their bright pink glory, just begging to be baked. how could i resist?
rhubarb is incredibly tart, so it generally gets paired with a lot of sugar and other sweet things – most commonly strawberry, but i’ve also seen it combined with apples, pears, and other fruits. the sad consequence is that we rarely get to taste rhubarb all on its own! isn’t it time for rhubarb to take the fruity spotlight? well, that’s exactly what it does in this crumble. the distinctive tangy tartness of the rhubarb comes through clearly and beautifully, and the ginger uplifts it to a whole new level. and the oat crumble topping adds just the right amount of crunch and heartiness to make this a delicious, well-rounded dessert. i now see rhubarb in a whole new light, and trust me–it looks good.
a delicious sweet crumble, full of tangy rhubarb and topped with a light oat topping.
- 2 pounds rhubarb, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ cup flour
- ½ cup oats
- another ¼ cup sugar
- a pinch of salt
- 3 tablespoons cold earth balance (or butter)
- preheat the oven to 350°f.
- in a medium baking dish (i used a pie plate), toss the rhubarb with the ginger. sprinkle the 1 cup of sugar over the top and set aside.
- in a small bowl, combine the flour, oats, ¼ cup sugar, and salt. use your fingers or a pastry cutter to work in the earth balance until it is in chunks the size of peas.
- bake the crumble until the topping is golden and the rhubarb is soft, about 1 hour 15 minutes. serve warm or at room temperature.