A few weeks ago, while driving home from San Francisco, we stopped at a little grill-type restaurant and had a late lunch. The daily dessert special was a rhubarb pie. I haven't had rhubarb pie in eons, I instantly craved some, and ordered it. Well, lo and behold, it seems this restaurant doesn't make their own pies. What they thought was rhubarb was actually cherry. Not even close to being the same! Now I have nothing against a piece of cherry pie, but I wanted rhubarb!
Rhubarb makes its annual appearance each spring. Imagine my delight when my local grocery store had a display of freshly-picked rhubarb. Into my basket they went! Checkout took a little longer than normal as the clerk didn't know the produce code for rhubarb and had never heard of it. Nor had the friend, who I had run into, and was behind me in line. I was amazed!
In case you don't know what rhubarb is, it's a pink or light red crisp stalk, very similar to a celery stalk. Rhubarb is very tart. Sugar is a must when baking with it!
I didn't have time to bake a pie. The next best thing, in my opinion, is a crisp. A layer of sweetened fruit on the bottom, topped by a brown sugar, crumbly top. It baked while we ate dinner. My Hubbers likes his with ice cream, I'm fine with just the crisp. It was equally good warmed up the next morning for my breakfast!
Old-Fashioned Rhubarb Crisp
4 cups rhubarb, cut into 1/2" pieces
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, if desired
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a bowl, combine rhubarb, sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Mix thoroughly (it will be crumbly, the sugar will not create a juice). Pour into a greased 8" x 8" glass baking dish.
In same bowl, mix butter, oats, flour, brown sugar, and salt. Sprinkle topping over the rhubarb mixture, creating an even layer.
Bake for 35 minutes, or until topping starts to brown.
Top with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.