With the coming rain this week , I’m dreaming of better weather while cooking up spring recipes. I’m done with heavy brazes and casseroles. I’m sure I’ll be craving slow brazed pork shoulder tacos soon enough but for now, give me the grill and fresh flavors! It’s way past the start of spring and I’m charging ahead with bright flavors and fresh cooking. That’s why when I saw rhubarb in the market today I didn’t think twice. I wanted get my first rhubarb fix of the season.
Strawberry rhubarb compote sounds lovely compared to stewed rhubarb (what my family usually calls it). Rhubarb is one of those foods that people either love or hate. My mother loves it. Meyer is repulsed by it. Go figure. He doesn’t stop me from buying it all spring and summer. So I don’t force him to eat it.
When I was a child we had a patch of rhubarb is a corner of the flower garden. It was thrilling to see the early shoots of rhubarb pushing up through the soil. Maybe next year we’ll plant a root or two. My grandfather had a love of rhubarb pie (well all pie). So every summer we’d make several-sometimes adding in strawberries. When we didn’t want to turn on the oven or were out of ready made pie crust, my mother would drop the cut rhubarb in a sauce pan with a bit of sugar and let it simmer for a half hour. Those bitter fibrous stalks release their juices and melt into the sugar turning into a delicious sweet and sour compote.
- 1lb rhubarb
- 1 pint strawberries
- 1/4-1/2 cup of sugar
- optional: black peppercorns, star anise, or citrus peel
- Cut the rhubarb into quarter inch pieces, remove the top of the stalk with the leaves.
- Clean strawberries, hull, and quarter them.
- Combine in deep sauce pan.
- Add 1/4 of sugar.
- Toss to coat.
- Simmer on low for a at least fifteen minutes or until the rhubarb has softened and broken down.
- Cool and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Strawberry rhubarb compote is great to make when you have some leftover strawberries hanging out in your fridge. A few black peppercorns, a star anise, or some citrus peels all can be added to the pot to add an extra layer of flavor.
Ohh tasty rhubarb compote you are perfect over greek yogurt in the morning, but equally delicious as a side to roast pork, and delectable as a topping to pound cake or cheesecake.