Food: Rhubarb and Rosewater Fool
Rhubarb is first out the gate in the spring fruit stakes. And here in Tasmania, rhubarb actually manages to retain its lead until the cherries and strawberries arrive in summer. I’ve planted lots of rhubarb in the garden not only because I love to eat it, but I also think it’s a beautiful plant in its own right.
It’s a funny name for a dessert, fool, but maybe it’s because any fool could make it. Simply poached fruit folded through whipped cream. Anyone can do that, right?
I first tasted this dish when my friend Stewart made it for 40th birthday party. The combination of rhubarb and rosewater was so heavenly I’ll never forget that first delicious mouthful. I love how some foods do that.
There are a million different versions of a fool, some like to add custard, or yoghurt, or get really fancy with mascarpone. But I like this simple version, tart rhubarb, pillowy soft cream with the soft perfume of a summer rose.
Rhubarb and Rosewater Fool
1 bunch rhubarb
½ cup of sugar
300mls of pure cream
1 tablespoon of icing sugar
1 – 2 tablespoon rosewater – to taste
Slice rhubarb into 5cm pieces. Arrange in a baking dish and sprinkle over the sugar. Add a drizzle of water. Cover tightly with foil and bake in a moderate oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until tender. When cool remove rhubarb and strain reserving the juices. Chill the rhubarb pieces.
In a small saucepan, add the rhubarb juices and reduce over medium heat until syrupy. Allow to cool completely.
Pour the cream into a medium bowl and sift in the icing sugar. Whip the cream until you have soft peaks, but don’t go too stiff or the cream will curdle when you add the rhubarb. Sprinkle the rosewater over the cream and gently fold through.
Add the chilled rhubarb pieces and very gently fold the rhubarb through the cream. You want to create a ripple effect. Add a little more rosewater if you like. Spoon into glass bowls and drizzle over the syrup. You can eat straight away but I think it’s nicer if you chill them for an hour or so.
About Michelle: “We ditched the bright lights of Sydney for the Tasmanian countryside looking for a simple life with love, chooks and plenty of cake…”