Blue Sky Farm

My blogging posts and photos are part of me . I think of this as a scrapbook of my life. The names have not been changed.. they are real people who have crossed my path along my journey. Some I know intimately, my family and friends. If their names are mentioned it's a sure sign they are special to me and I love them dearly...come along see for yourself, perhaps you know some of them too..

March 12, 2009

Spring Shoots...Rhubarb

Rhubarb is a cool season, perennial plant that is very winter hardy and resistant to drought. Its crop is produced from crowns consisting of fleshy rhizomes and buds. Following a season of growth the rhubarb crown becomes dormant and temperatures below 40­ F are required to stimulate bud break and subsequent growth. The first shoots to appear in the spring are edible petioles and leaves. These emerge sequentially as long as temperatures remain cool (below 90­ F). As temperatures increase, top growth is suppressed, even appearing dormant in periods of extreme heat. With declining temperatures in later summer, foliage growth resumes. One pound of rhubarb equals about 3 cups chopped. Rhubarb is an excellent source of vitamin C, calcium and potassium. You can substitute chopped rhubarb for about half of the fruit in any dessert recipe.
I have not developed a great taste for rhubarb. I think the plant is beautiful. I have eaten it in a sauce, and in a pie with strawberries, which really wasn’t bad. This recipe I found looks like one I might try:

“A light and fluffy marshmallow layer tops the rhubarb filling in this delicious make-ahead recipe shared by Dumont, Minnesota field editor Renee Schwebach."
1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs, divided
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
4 cups diced fresh or frozen rhubarb
1 (3 ounce) package raspberry or strawberry gelatin mix
1 (8 ounce) carton frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
2 cups cold milk
1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
In a bowl, combine 1-1/2 cups cracker crumbs and butter. Press mixture into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Bake at 350°. for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, cornstarch and rhubarb. Bing to a boil; cook and stir for 2-3 minutes or until thickened and rhubarb is tender. Remove from the heat; stir in gelatin until dissolved. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or until partially set.
Spoon rhubarb mixture over crust. Combine whipped topping and marshmallows; spread over rhubarb mixture. In a bowl, whisk milk and pudding mix for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Carefully spread over marshmallow topping (the dish will be full). Sprinkle with remaining cracker crumbs. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving

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