My supper club dessert was rhubarb fool, chosen for it’s fresh taste, simplicity and seasonality. My friend Clara, whose lovely crafting blog you can find here, gave me simply loads of her homegrown rhubarb: big thick stalks of it. It’s quite a different, more flavoursome beast than the slender stuff you buy at supermarkets. Garden rhubarb takes a little longer to cook and requires more sweetness than forced rhubarb (available between January and March), so you should adjust this recipe according to the variety you have.
The recipe is adapted from Felicity Cloake’s perfect rhubarb fool, the main alterations being my use of orange juice and zest and 100% double cream, luxurious. I also prefer to serve my cream atop the rhubarb compote to get the most out of its beautiful pink colour and so the diner can adjust the zing in every mouthful. For the vegans I substituted cream with coconut milk, placing the can in the fridge, scooping off the creamy half that separates from the water and then stirring in rhubarb syrup. I served the vegan desserts with homemade shortbread fingers seasoned with a little ginger.
I tested Josh Eggleton’s ginger snaps recipe on the Tuesday before my supper club but I was disappointed to find my biscuits didn’t come out with crinkly tops. I think this was due to them not being placed high enough in the oven and the fact I reduced the sugar content slightly, replacing it with pieces of crystallised ginger. I intended to follow the recipe to the letter on the Friday but then Sarah came over with a huge box of homemade orange and almond cantuccini and I thought I’d be a fool not to serve them with my fools instead.
- 450g garden rhubarb, sliced into 1cm cubes
- Juice of 1/2 orange
- 2 slivers of orange zest – pared of white pith
- 6 heaped dsp sugar
- 300ml double cream
- Slice the rhubarb into equal-sized chunks and place in a saucepan with the sugar and orange juice over a medium heat.
- Stew the rhubarb until just tender; the length of time this takes will vary according to the size of your rhubarb chunks and whether it is forced or garden variety so keep a close eye on it and stir regularly, you don’t want a sloppy mess. Mine took about 10 minutes.
- Strain the rhubarb over a jug and set aside to cool.
- Return the rhubarb juices to the pan with the orange zest and reduce to a dark pink syrup.
- You can store the rhubarb compote and syrup separately in the fridge until you are ready to serve your desserts, they freeze well and will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- When ready to serve, whisk the cream so that it forms peaks and then fold in the rhubarb syrup.
- To serve fill some pretty glasses half with rhubarb compote and half rhubarb cream.
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About Chloe King
I'm a freelance writer, designer and webby type. I live with my husband and daughter in the south of England. I like to cook and can throw a good party.
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