Crumble is the obvious vehicle for it, especially with some stem ginger and lashings of custard. The crumble cake I made last year was particularly good.
But I rustled up a quick batch of muffins at the weekend with my latest pickings, and boy were they good! I decided to pair the tart rhubarb with the treacle flavours of muscovado sugar – both in the sponge and a layer scattered on top.
The results were magnificent. A muffin that’s ideal for breakfast with some yoghurt, a nice coffee break or a picnic/lunchbox treat.
I used some fab hexagonal cake cases I’d bought last summer from Carrefour, which look rather fetching.
They’re based on this recipe from Rachel Allen, but i’ve rewritten my own version and method out below.
They’re not too sweet, the rhubarb flavour is there but not too dominant for younger taste buds to object to, and the dark sugar gorgeousness gives the sponge a wonderful rich colour and flavour that lingers pleasantly on your tongue.
Bake them and watch them disappear into the nearest tummies at rapid speed.
Rhubarb and muscovado muffins
125g muscavado sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
100ml buttermilk (see tip below)
100g rhubarb (see tip below)
180g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarb soda
1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and line a muffin tray with cases. Put the sugar, oil, egg, vanilla extract and buttermilk into a bowl and mix until smooth.
2. Stir in the rhubarb, then add the plain flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt. Mix together until combined and then divide between 8-10 muffin cases. They should be about 2/3 full of mixture.
3. Bake for 20 minutes until risen and deeply golden. Transfer to a cooling rack and then tuck in. Especially good served with coffee.
Tip: I’d already cooked up 200g of rhubarb with a splash of water and 3 tbsp of muscovado sugar, so just bunged half into my muffin mix. You could add it uncooked, just make sure you chop it up really fine.
Buttermilk: If you don’t have any or can’t get hold of it then you can make it really easily. Combine 240ml milk with a tablespoon of lemon juice or white wine vinegar.
I’m thinking of making rhubarb crumble ice cream next – just need to clear a space in my freezer AND remember to put my ice cream maker bowl in there the day before. Somehow this never seems to happen at the moment!
Tiz the season of rhubarb, so this recipe is getting entered into Ren’s Simple and in Season event over on Fabulicious Food, and Working London Mummy’s One Ingredient. Check them both out for some inspiration.