Although typically paired with fruit, rhubarb is a stalky vegetable, similar in appearance and texture to celery, but bearing no resemblance in taste. It is extremely sour, both raw and cooked, and is often heavily sugared to overcompensate for it's pucker-power.
You'll find stalks of varying sizes, with ruby red, pink and grassy green streaks, in stores and farmer's markets from late March through June. If the stalks have leaves, or if growing your own, leaves should be trimmed and discarded before cooking, as they contain a high oxalic acid content and are potentially toxic to people and pets.
If you give rhubarb's tart bite a fighting chance by holding back on sweeteners just a bit, it's distinctive flavor will add balance and complexity to any recipe. And it won't bite back, promise.
Rhubarb Strawberry Shortcakes with Rosemary and Chantilly Cream
Yields: 6 shortcakes
Method: biscuit method
Allergy Info: contains wheat, gluten, dairy
Fancy Equipment: parchment paper
Ingredients for the Shortcakes:
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, diced
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 egg beaten plus 1 tablespoons milk, for egg wash
6 small top sprigs of rosemary
Ingredients for the Strawberry-Rhubarb Compote:
3 cups rhubarb, leaves removed, washed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup sugar, or to taste
1/4 cup orange juice
Pinch of salt
1 pint strawberries, washed and quartered
Ingredients for the Chantilly Cream:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Make the Biscuits:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles a course meal with pea-sized pieces of fat. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk the eggs, rosemary and heavy cream. Add to the flour and mix until just blended. The dough should be sticky, but not wet.
Place the dough out onto a well-floured surface and form the dough into a rough circle, one inch high. Cut 6 biscuits with a fluted or straight cookie or biscuit cutter and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Brush the top of each biscuit with the egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake for 20 minutes or until the outside is slightly golden around the edges. Do not open the oven door during the first 15 minutes, to allow the biscuits to rise properly. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.
Make the Compote:
Add the rhubarb, sugar, orange juice and pinch of salt to a sauce pan. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes and add half of the strawberries. Simmer for another 15 minutes, or until the rhubarb is just tender but still toothy. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Add the rest of the strawberries to the cooled mixture and stir to incorporate.
Make the Chantilly Cream:
Beat the cold cream with a wire whisk or hand mixer until soft peaks begin to form. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla and continue to beat until stiff peaks just barely begin to form.
Assemble the shortcakes:
Split shortcake in the middle, like a hamburger bun. Place the bottom of the biscuit into a shallow bowl and spoon some of the compote over the biscuit. Add a generous spoonful of Chantilly cream. Place the top part of the biscuit on the cream and top with a small amount of compote and another dollop of cream. Place a small sprig of rosemary on the cream. Repeat for each shortcake.
Combine the dough scraps to create additional biscuits if desired. The second batch of biscuits will be slightly tougher and will not rise as high as the first, but will have the same flavor.
Biscuits can be split into three layers if sliced carefully. This will allow you to stack more ingredients for a more dramatic presentation.
Thyme or lavender in place of the rosemary also works well in this recipe. Lemon zest can also be added.
Post by Dawn Viola : dawnviola.com