I HAVE TWO WORDS FOR YOU RHUBARB AND ROSES.........

WHAT'S IN SEASON......RHUBARB......HERE ARE A COUPLE OF WAYS YOU CAN USE IT  .... AND SO QUICK IT FEELS LIKE YOU'RE CHEATING.

Rhubarb is an easy plant to grow although it does prefer a cooler climate. It doesn't need a lot of TLC. Grown from crowns generally, you will probably get 2 crops per season. You can also grow them in pots as long as they are large enough for growth. When removing the leaves for food preparation, do not give to your chooks or stock as they contain oxalic acid which is poisonous.

Rhubarb can be a bit tart and it's a perfect partner to custards and ice creams. Which probably will negate what I have written below.

I always have to put in my health benefits of fruit and veg, I guess it's because I only have one body and I sure as hell want to look after it. 

Good things that Rhubarb does:-

Aids in weight loss, improves digestion, prevents Alzheimer’s disease, stimulates bone growth, avoid neuronal damage, increases skin health, prevents cancer, improves circulation, Vitamin K, which is found in rhubarb, may reduce the onset and development of insulin resistance in men and may offer the possibility of not getting diabetes. High in vitamin C also.

Roses and Rhubarb........has such a romantic ring to it.....

Lets get to it....

INGREDIENTS

1 Bunch Rhubarb (home grown) or should be in your local shops right now

1 squeeze of lemon

1/4 cup caster sugar

1 teaspoon orange blossom water or vanilla essence whatever is in your pantry

Juice of 1 small orange

Cut rhubarb into 6cm batons and place in a heavy based frypan. Add sugar.

Add squeeze of lemon, orange juice and I used orange blossom water. With the latter be aware it is quite strong in fragrance and don't be tempted to splash lots in.

Make sure you give the sugar a good stir so it completely dissolves. Cover with a lid and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Stir a few times to cook evenly. It doesn't take long to go from the hard batons to a syrupy compote.

I cook this on my stovetop but you can bake if you like. 

Ta Da..... it's now ready to use in a few different ways.

Get those fancy bowls out of the cupboard.....you gotta make it look pretty.

Rizogalo (Greek rice custard) into a bowl and layer with the Rhubarb. Top with whatever you have....I'm going for the pink Pashmak. Pistachio praline is great also.......

Cheats way....use Wicked Sister rice custard. It's pretty damned good, in Woolworths and it passed my Greek muster.

I always keep a few extra batons aside to bake in the oven at 170 degrees for about 15 minutes. Sprinkle a little bit of sugar on top.

They remain relatively intact and then I sprinkle a little bit of sugar on top again..... put them aside.

Get a tub of good quality full cream ice cream and soften slightly in a bowl at room temp.

Place your Rhubarb mix in the ice cream. I usually double the above Rhubarb recipe so I can make this also and put in the freezer.

Gently fold in........put mixture back in the tub and freeze overnight.

Get some more of those fancy bowls......top with the batons. 

I didn't make this for anyone in particular........ just us, to enjoy on a hot day. 

We are off to sit in the rose garden.....with my refreshing and delightful Rhubarb ice cream. 

Let me know if you have any cheat things you do with Rhubarb......I'm always on the lookout.