Rhubarbgate




Today I have been talking rhubarb.

I don't mean I was a film extra pretending to chatter away in the background - but I was discussing that love-it-or-hate-it garden staple with my neighbour.

I was reminded of my late mother who loved her rhubarb. It was a truth, universally acknowledged in my family, that a single woman who came knocking on my mother's door was in want of rhubarb (little literary reference there as the better-read among you will no doubt recognise).

She tried to foist sticks of rhubarb on all her unsuspecting visitors. I was wise to her tricks and refused to accept any unless it was cooked, covered with pastry or crumble and with a jug of custard beside it.

However, there was the time I succumbed to her blandishments and took home a bundle of  raw rhubarb.

Now, cooking is not my forte. In fact, anything that is at all practical and useful is not my forte. If you want a stiffly-worded letter written to a utility firm, I'm you're man, but don't ask me to look after your house plants while you're on holiday. Not unless you want to come home to plant carnage.

Mother wittered on about putting some bicarb in when cooking the rhubarb to reduce the acidity - so I did.

I made a very tasty crumble and the dearly beloved devoured it. He even had second helpings and  later that day, thirds.

When my mother asked him if he had liked the rhubarb crumble he said he did - but unfortunately it seemed to have had a detrimental effect on his digestive system.

Ah.

When we were alone my mother asked me how much bicarb I had put in the crumble.

She had told me to add a "pinch". What the hell is a "pinch" anyway? I can't remember exactly how much bicarb I had added but it was more than a heaped teaspoon but less than a heaped dessertspoon. That would do it, said my mother while shaking her head in despair.

The dearly beloved has now completely forgotten Rhubarbgate so don't remind him, please. All healthy relationships have their little secrets. Don't they?

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14 comments:

  1. I used to love rhubarb pie and crumble and over ice cream. But there is so much sugar in it that I haven't made it in years.

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    1. I love it too but it's so sharp that unfortunately it does need a lot of sugar.

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  2. Oh, no! My best friend's father used to make rhubarb/strawberry pie that I alone would eat with him. lol Be well!

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    1. I sincerely hope no bicarbonate of soda was used in the making of those pies!

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  3. Ah those pinch cooks. That was funny. For us though probably not so much for him:))

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  4. popped over via your comment on my post having completely forgotten who you are DUH! sorry about that, I missed a few people when transferring to my new laptop. I don't get the single women/rhubarb reference, can you enlighten me please? I love rhubarb and make apple rhubarb pies and crumbles now and again, but usually just have the cooked fruits with warm vanilla custard. I never put bicarb in it though, only brown sugar.

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    1. I no longer use bicarb unless the recipe specifically asks for it! The literary reference is a play on the opening lines of Pride and Prejudice, "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife."

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  5. PS, I always thought a pinch was almost self-explanatory, however much you can pinch between forefinger and thumb is a pinch, whether it be salt or any other spice.

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    1. Yes, self-explanatory to normal people but not to a cooking dimwit!

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  6. That was a fun story :) I am not a fan of rhubarb itself, but I can tolerate it in something with strawberries.

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    1. I love strawberry and rhubarb crumble - with lots of custard, of course!

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  7. Thanks for coming by the blog and leaving a message. Oh I am sure I have ever eaten that. Matter of fact, sure I have not had. HAHA..

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    1. Rhubarb crumble is delicious - minus the bicarb!

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  8. Rhubarb is marmite to me, I dislike it intensely. Beloved used to grow and cook rhubarb, freeze it and use it for his muesli throughout winter. Rather him than me. I doubt that he ever added bicarb though.
    I do eat rhubarb and strawberry cake, there’s enough pastry and sugar to mask the taste of rhubarb completely.

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