Rhubarb is in season right now, so catch it while you can. Instead of making the usual suspects (pie and crisp), why not try this simple, delicious, sweet-tart compote? It can be spooned over ice cream, big meringues with whipped cream, pudding or pound cake, or swirled into your morning yogurt if you’re feeling virtuous. I’m having a friend for lunch tomorrow and plan on serving it over panna cotta that’s chilling as I write this. I’d planned on making something else for dessert, but abandoned those plans as soon as I spotted those crisp, rosy stalks at Elawa Farm’s garden market this morning.
Raspberry Rhubarb Compote
makes 1 1/2 cups
- 5 medium stalks rhubarb chopped into 1/2 inch pieces (about 2 cups)
- 6 ounces fresh raspberries (1 small container)
- 1 vanilla bean
- zest of a lemon
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Cut bean in half width-wise and save other half for another use. Cut bean-half length-wise and scrape seeds out by running knife along length of pod.
- Place chopped rhubarb, raspberries, vanilla bean seeds and the pod you just scraped them from, lemon zest, sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Stir.
- Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer 6 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently, until rhubarb has softened.
- Using the back of a wooden spoon, smash some of the softened rhubarb pieces and stir to distribute.
- Turn off heat and stir in the lemon juice. Remove vanilla bean pod.
- Spoon warm over ice cream or allow to cool completely before storing in the refrigerator. Compote will thicken as it cools.