“Jamie At Home – Cook Your Way to the Good Life”, Jamie Oliver, Penquin, 2007
My brother Fred has the family green thumb. Long before the snow and frost are gone from his New Hampshire lawn, Fred has flats and window boxes filled with future flora, ready to go into the ground at the first hint of spring. Having a less-than-90-day growing season will do that to a man. read the complete review here.
This cookbook is all about growing and cooking what’s in season, as soon as it’s ready to pick and before it’s gone for another year. Rhubarb is like that – this is Oliver’s twist on an old French classic.
Rhubarb and Custard Kinda Souffle
14oz rhubarb, cut into 1″ lengths
3 1/2oz, plus 2T caster sugar
1 3/4T softened butter
5 1/4oz ready made custard…a bit more can’t hurt
1 large egg yolk, plus 4 egg whites, ideally from organic eggs
1t all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 350F. Place a cookie sheet in the oven to heat. Put the rhubarb in a medium saucepan with the sugar. Cover, simmer gently for about 10 minutes until the fruit is soft. Set aside, let cool completely.
Rub the inside of 6 ramekins with the butter. Put the gingersnaps in a zip top bag. Using a rolling pin, crush them to fine crumbs. Dust the insides of the ramekins with the crumbs, then shake out excess and set aside for later use.
To assemble, put a blob of the cooled rhubarb in each ramekin. Mix the rest of the rhubarb with the custard, egg yolk and flour. In a large, clean bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt until you have soft peaks. Add the rest of the sugar, whisk on high until you have stiff peaks…don’t over whisk. This will take about 3 minutes.
Gently, fold about 2T of the stiff egg whites into the rhubarb mixture. This will loosen it up a bit. Tip the mix into the bowl with the rest of the egg whites and fold together very carefully. Divide the mixture between the ramekins and level the tops. Wipe the rims of the dishes clean.
Remove the hot cookie sheet from the oven and place the filled ramekins on it. Put back in the oven, bake for 18-20 minutes or until the tops are golden brown and have risen nicely. Serve immediately, dusted with the rest of the gingersnap crumbs.
Rhubarb pic courtesy of http://www.wish.ca
Ramekin pic courtesy of image.replacements.com
Kent McDonald is a Certifiied Personal Chef, living and working in Phoenix, AZ. (c) All Rights Reserved, 2009