What do you like more… Rhubarb or chocolate? Chocolate.
What do you like more… Rhubarb or lobster? Lobster.
Ok, so maybe those ones were obvious, but if we keep playing, you’ll notice the rhubarb hating continues.
What do you like more… Rhubarb or three day old stale pizza? Pizza.
What do you like more… Rhubarb or doing the dishes? Dishes.
What do you like more… Rhubarb or chopping herbs and shucking oysters? Finally, a victory for rhubarb!
It’s not that I actually hate rhubarb but given the option of eating rhubarb or something else, nine times out of ten I’ll choose the something else. Despite this, rhubarb intrigues me. Possibly in part because it brings back fond memories of plucking a sun warmed stalk of rhubarb from the garden and proceeding to eat it by dipping the end in a cup of sugar between bites. These days I want to pair it with more savoury dishes, perhaps in a tangy bbq sauce or a chutney? Even though I’m harbouring thoughts of savoury rhubarb, I’ve been making nothing but sweet things in the form of Strawberry Rhubarb Ripple ice cream and Strawberry Rhubarb Mousse. If you asked me what do you like more… Strawberries or rhubarb? Strawberries would clearly win.
Unfortunately there aren’t recipes to accompany these dishes. The ice cream was made as an afterthought. I had made strawberry rhubarb jam and decided that I wanted to swirl it into a vanilla ice cream base. So I did. And it was good. It was extra good when eaten out of Cinnamon Tuiles, which I will provide a recipe for. Those were sort of an accident too. I had to make tuiles for a dessert at work and I’d never made them before so I did a trial run at home first. It just so happened that it paired great with my ice cream. The Strawberry Rhubarb Mousse was adapted from a recipe for cherry mousse that I found in Food & Drink magazine, which I’ve touted before as a great free publication put out by the Liquor Control Board of Ontario. I made that one for Mother’s Day as Mom requested ‘something with rhubarb’ and I grudgingly complied.
Cinnamon Tuiles, (Adapted slightly from Gourmet, November 1998)
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a saucepan melt butter with brown sugar and corn syrup over moderate heat, stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and stir in flour, cinnamon and a pinch of salt until smooth.
Drop batter by the tablespoon full onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Leave a lot of space in between as these cookies spread immensely. Bake cookies in middle of oven 6 minutes, or until golden.
Once you remove the tray from the oven, let the tuiles rest for about a minute before you try to remove them. If you try to pick them up too soon, they’ll fall apart. As soon as you’re able to gently lift a tuile off the parchment without tearing it, they’re ready to mold. You can mold them any way you like, I’ve pressed them into muffin tins as well as draped them over coffee cups and small bowls, it all depends what shape you want. Cool cookie completely and then transfer to an airtight container. Tuiles keep 5 days in an airtight container at cool room temperature.