Rhubarb grew in my mother’s garden. In early spring, I remember my mother cutting the pink slender stalks and making stewed rhubarb. She served this to us at breakfast and sometimes as dessert after supper. I loved the sweet and sour contrast that comes with eating rhubarb. Sometimes, I would take a raw piece, dip it in sugar and suck on the fruit enjoying the taste.
After reading Molly Wizenberg’s recent blog post “A lot of rhubarb”, I realized I’d been rhubarb-deprived for too long. Since I don’t have a rhubarb patch, I had to settle for buying local rhubarb at the grocery store.
My mother didn’t’t use a recipe. Her stewed rhubarb was made by combining rhubarb (cut into 1 inch slices) with sugar, water and vanilla, and then cooking it on the stove top until it was soft and mushy.
Playing around with flavors, I decided to add lavender sugar and use Novelty Hill Chardonnay in place of the water. Lavender adds a slightly floral taste to the rhubarb. I combine the mixture in a dutch oven and cooked it in the oven for 30 minutes.
While the poached rhubarb was still slightly warm, I served myself a small bowl and time-traveled back to my childhood when rhubarb ruled!