I make no apology for adding to the legion of rhubarb recipes that I’ve read recently.
I think it’s because rhubarb is something that I never thought that I’d actually end up liking. It wasn’t, for whatever reason, a food that figured strongly in my childhood. I’m pretty sure I didn’t actually try rhubarb until I was at least in my late-teens. No doubt my mother thought that my notoriously picky eating habits would never be up to the challenge. Now I feel like I have to make up for all that missed time.
I found a ball of pastry lurking in the bottom of the freezer. I can’t remember what it was left over from but I knew that it would be the perfect vehicle for my latest haul of rhubarb.
The touch of basil in the filling is a nice complement to the tartness of the rhubarb, a fragrant note which adds another dimension of flavour. Basil is by no means the only herb that would work here; mint would be an obvious choice, rosemary or thyme would also be delicious.
- 250g rhubarb, chopped into 1 inch chunks
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 75g – 115g (1/3 – 1/2 cup) caster/granulated sugar, depending on taste
- Small handful of basil leaves, chopped finely
- Approx 200g short crust pastry*
- 1 egg beaten
- In a bowl, combine the rhubarb, lemon zest and juice, sugar and basil and set aside.
- Roll out the pastry to the thickness of about 1/4 inch in a rough circle.
- Place the pastry on a baking tin and spoon the filling into the middle leaving a border of a couple of inches. Fold over the edges of the pastry, pinching together the excess so that all the filling is contained. Place in the fridge and chill for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Brush the pastry with beaten egg.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes until the rhubarb is cooked through and the pastry is golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.