A friend of mine messaged me one fine morning: “I sprained my neck really badly and I can’t move it. Can you take care of me for a couple of days?”I said, ‘Sure.’ I went off to the market and got some potatoes, meat, pumpkin and then I walked past some rhubarbs. ‘Hmmm…’ I heard myself think. Hmmm… rhubarbs are on the ‘things-to-try’ list. And after all those one days, some days, I think that one day has arrived.
I brought a bunch of rhubarb home and introduced it to my kitchen. ‘You rest here tonight, tomorrow we will be busy’, I said. I looked for a rhubarb recipe and thought, ‘Perfect’.
This morning I got up excited just thinking about today’s project. It’s wonderful to try new things. It’s like meeting a person for the first time and you don’t know anything about them. That’s how I look at new ingredients and recipes. Hopefully one day after
meeting it more often, you become good friends.
Alas, in my haste & excitement I made so many mistakes, I want to bury my head in shame. I broke the cardinal rule of cooking. I didn’t read the recipe carefully.
The recipe wrote: Sprinkle 1/4 cup caster sugar on the fruits.
What I did: Poured the full amount (1 3/4 cup ) on the fruits.
The recipe wrote: Combine eggs, flour, salt and remaining sugar (damn).
What I did: Combine eggs, flour, 2 tbsp sugar (blush) and butter.
Eventually, to rectify the mistake, I added an additional half-a-cup of flour to the mix and ended up with a doughy texture instead. The result, after 1 hour of baking, was actually… not bad. It’s not exactly crumbly dry. Think, biscuit-cookie. Was it an over-kill with the sugar? Uhm… not if you add cream (like I did). It’s quite good, a little watery which was probably due to the frozen berries but I kinda like it. (Note: If you like your Rhubarb Crumble the old fashion way, go here for the original recipe.)
The recipe below is only for the bold. Venture if you dare:
Rhubarb Berry Mandarin Crumble (serves 6)
* 1 bunch rhubarb, trimmed, cut into 3cm pieces
* 1 cup mixed berries
* 5 mandarins, peeled and de-seeded
* 1 1/2 cup caster sugar + 2 tbsp
* Ground cinnamon
* 2 eggs
* 2 1/2 cups plain flour (if you’re aiming for the same doughy consistency)
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 150g butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease an ovenproof dish.
- Combine rhubarb, berries and mandarins in the dish. Sprinkle with caster sugar and cinnamon.
- Combine the eggs, flour, salt, butter and 2 tbsp of sugar in a bowl.
- Scatter the mixture over the fruit.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes or until light golden.
It will be soft but will become crunchy on standing.