I give this blog credit for a lot of things – keeping me (somewhat) sane by giving me a creative outlet during long Minnesota winters, expanding our family menu beyond the regular rotation, and “teaching” me how to cook things I never would have tried if I hadn’t been challenging myself with a ridiculous list. But one of the finer things to come out of this project is that I learned to like rhubarb. It’s true, boys and girls, that you can still learn to like new things, even when you’re a grown-up. I was always kind of “meh” about rhubarb when I lived in the land where it was plentiful, and now that I’ve moved away, I actually kind of miss it. Thankfully, it has spread its stringy arms all over these United States now, and you can buy it in the frozen foods section of even the most proudly Texan grocery store.
If you do, don’t make this with it. It’s a recipe from Make It Ahead, and it’s garbage.
I simmered it forEVER, or at least four times as long as the recommended 10-15 minutes, and the thermometer never reached 220F as promised. I raised the heat, I stirred, I sighed, and still … 200 at most. Boo. I probably would have eaten it anyway, but it scorched the bottom of the pan.
There’s probably a lesson here somewhere. Appreciate the good things in life (like rhubarb) before you move away from them. Or don’t make anything that requires a candy thermometer.
I made this over Labor Day weekend, which I think I spent last year making homemade play-doh for the pre-K classroom, so maybe I just had the urge to ruin some cookware. The weekend wasn’t a complete kitchen bust, though. We spent the first few days at Camp Allen, where we were kept fed and busy, and then I came home to make four plum cakes and two huge batches of chicken marbella (for future dinner parties, all in the freezer), purple hull peas, roast chicken, chicken stock, risotto, chicken noodle soup, and Rowan’s favorite chocolate cake. The dishwasher might just have a chance to catch up before next weekend, if I don’t scorch any more saucepans with rhubarb.