Roasting even the saddest of fruit is a brilliant trick. Because the roasting draws out and evaporates the water, you are left with a much more concentrated flavour. Roasting rhubarb not only gives great flavour, it also leaches out the most fabulous princess-pink juice. As the only girl in a house of boys my home is blessedly lacking in Disney pink – but I do love a little blush here and there.
Play around with how much sugar you add. I tend not to add much, and sweeten it by drizzling it with honey when I serve it.
Having a container of roast rhubarb in the fridge is a gift. It can be kept in there for 5 days. Always serve it at room temperature or slightly warmed. Use it to top porridge, yoghurt, waffles, pancakes or as a base for crumble. I am rather partial to it with a slice of plain Victoria sponge and a blob of plain yoghurt – the sourness of the yoghurt works beautifully with the tart fruit and sweet cake.
If you siphon off the juice after it has cooked, it makes the most darling addition to a gin and tonic. Just saying.
Roast rhubarb ingredients (serves 4)
8 stems of rhubarb
a heaped dessert spoon of sugar
Optional – add some chopped stem ginger or a stem of rosemary to the fruit as it cooks. Add honey after it is cooked if needed.
- Pre-heat your oven to 180°C (160°C fan) or 350°F (330°F convection).
- Wash rhubarb and get a ceramic or glass oven-proof dish – metal and the acidity of rhubarb don’t mix. You need one that will hold the fruit in a single layer so I use my lasagna dish.
- Gather the stems next to each other. Cut off any dis-coloured ends or leaves and then cut the rhubarb into thumb-length chunks and add to the dish. Scatter a dessert spoon of sugar over the fruit and add a stem of rosemary or some chopped stem ginger if you’d like.
- Tightly wrap with foil and put into the oven for 40 minutes.
- The fruit is ready when it is soft but still holds its shape. It will have released lovely juices. Leave to cool slightly before using.