|Grandma Elsbeth's Rhubarb Cobbler|
Rhubarb, like asparagus, is a culinary harbinger of spring. As a kid, I couldn't wait for it to sprout in the spring, because that meant my grandmother would be making Rhubarb Cobbler. All winter long I looked forward to a warm bowl of her cobbler, with its tangy pink interior and sweet, crusty topping. Spring tastes like rhubarb, if you ask me!
If you don't know what it is, rhubarb is a relative of buckwheat, and is actually a vegetable rather than a fruit. It has long stalks that resemble reddish celery, and large green leaves at the tops of the stalks. Like cranberries, it's far too sour to eat plain and raw, so it is usually served cooked and sweetened.
Rhubarb first appeared in China thousands of years ago, where it was used medicinally - to induce vomiting. Well... that's appetizing. No, Grandma's cobbler doesn't make you hurl, if you're wondering. Steer clear of the leaves, however. That's the part that will make you sick. The leaves are poisonous if ingested in large quantities.
I've had many wonderful rhubarb dishes, like a strawberry rhubarb sauce that is great served over vanilla ice cream, or a sweet, tart coffee cake filled with juicy nuggets of rhubarb. To use rhubarb in recipes, simply wash it up and chop it up like you would stalks of celery.
It had been ages since I enjoyed Rhubarb Cobbler. I was just too cheap to spend $5 a pound for something I used to pick out of the garden for free. Finally, I broke down, and forked over the money. I used my grandmother's recipe, and the cobbler tasted just like hers. It brought back so many wonderful memories. Oh, silly me for missing out on such happiness over a few dollars. Now I know better! I'm sharing two recipes with you today, one for my grandmother's cobbler, which has a unique topping recipe I've never seen anywhere else, and a simple, simple, simple four ingredient quickie version based on last week's 4 Ingredient Blackberry Cobbler.
Grandma Elsbeth's Rhubarb Cobbler
4 cups sliced fresh rhubarb
¼ cup dry strawberry gelatin
½ cup butter, melted
2 cups sugar, divided
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 ½ cups boiling water
Place rhubarb in an 9 x 13 baking pan. Sprinkle with dry gelatin. Cream butter and 1 cup sugar. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Add milk and dry ingredients to butter and sugar. Spoon mixture over fruit. Mix remaining cup sugar, cornstarch and nutmeg; sprinkle evenly over batter. Pour boiling water over top. Bake at 350 degrees for 60 minutes.
|A quick cobbler, served in a bowl identical to my grandmother's dishes|
4 Ingredient Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler
4-6 stalks rhubarb, chopped
1/2 cup good quality strawberry preserves
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 tube refrigerated sugar cookie dough
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix rhubarb, preserves, and cinnamon and spread the fruit mixture into an 8 inch round cake pan. Crumble cookie dough evenly over fruit mixture. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the cobbler is bubbly and the cookie topping is golden brown and crisp.