Friday, May 14, 2010
This is another Norwegian recipe for rhubarb, Scandinavians, as I've mentioned before, being in love with rhubarb. Out of all the things I've done with rhubarb as of now, I'd go so far as to say that this is my favorite. It's the pure essence of rhubarb. Rhubarb stewed until the juices are concentrated with sugar, shot through with fresh-squeezed orange juice, and then held suspended with a little gelatin. It's unbelievably refreshing and just as addicting.
I think the color must vary with your rhubarb stocks. Mine were a little lackluster in the aesthetics department, mostly green with hardly a streak of red. So my gelee is a pale golden color. The book from which this recipe came, my old standby 'Norwegian National Recipes' calls this a Rhubarb Fromage, but, since fromage is French for cheese, and there's nothing fromage'y about this, I've renamed it so it won't be misleading. Seriously, you guys, if you love rhubarb, and I mean really love that tart and particular flavor of rhubarb, you will not be sorry if you make this. I cannot think of a more perfect and refreshing summertime dessert.
Adopted from Norwegian National Recipes
1 pound rhubarb
2/3 cup sugar
juice of two large oranges (navel, for instance)
2 envelopes knox gelatin, which is 2 tablespoons if you're measuring
Cut the rhubarb into bite-sized slices, and put in a pot. Fill the pot with water until it just covers the rhubarb, then add the sugar. Simmer the rhubarb until just tender, then strain out the rhubarb, but reserve the cooking water, in which the rhubarb juice has been rendered. Put the rhubarb aside on a dish.
Return the cooking water to the heat and bring to a boil. Whisk the gelatin into the water until it fully dissolves. Remove from the heat and add the orange juice. Beat the juice mixture with a hand-held beater on low so you don't splatter the hot juices, until the mixture is light, fluffy and foamy.
Arrange the rhubarb on a 9x9" Pyrex container, or really any serving shallow serving bowl you don't mind keeping in the refrigerator for a few hours. Then pour the juice mixture over the top. Refrigerate until set, then serve.