7 Ways to Get Sweet on Rhubarb
Rhubarb is often dubbed the “pie plant,” and the stalks, soft and delectable when baked, do make a divine pie filling. But pie is by no means the only way to experience rhubarb. It’s delicious in all kinds of desserts, and this tart vegetable also works well in savory dishes.
In Season: Rhubarb can be found from late winter to early spring with a peak season from April to June.
What to Look For: Thin, red, crisp stalks have the best texture. If stalks are floppy, it indicates they were picked too long ago.
How to Store: Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for up to one week.
Related: 14 New, Lighter Comfort Food Ideas
Pavlova with Rhubarb and Pistachios
As delicious as it is beautiful: The sweet-tart baked rhubarb contrasts with crunchy pistachios and the crispy yet soft and sugary meringue.
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
1 tablespoon cornstarch
4 large egg whites, room temperature
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon), divided
1 pound rhubarb, trimmed and sliced on the bias into 2-inch pieces
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Chopped roasted unsalted pistachios, for garnish
Meringue can be made 1 day ahead and kept uncovered in a cool, dry place. Rhubarb can be baked up to 6 hours ahead.
1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Stir together 1 cup sugar and the cornstarch in a small bowl. Beat together egg whites, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt with a mixer on low speed until very frothy. Increase speed to medium-high and gradually add sugar mixture, beating until stiff, glossy peaks form, 12 to 15 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl halfway through.
2. Mound meringue onto a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and gently spread into a 7-inch circle, leaving a well 3 1/2 inches wide and 1 inch deep in the center. Bake until meringue is crisp on the outside and the texture of marshmallow on the inside, about 2 1/2 hours. (If meringue starts to brown, reduce oven temperature to 175 degrees.) Turn off heat and let meringue cool in oven at least 2 1/2 hours or up to overnight.
3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine rhubarb, water, remaining 3/4 cup sugar, remaining tablespoon lemon juice, and a pinch of salt in a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish. Bake until just tender, 10 to 12 minutes, spooning juices over halfway through.