By Dame Judy Hevrdejs
There’s a good reason strawberries and rhubarb show up in farmers markets and grocers these days. They ripen about the same time and the tart rhubarb plays nice with sweet strawberries. The easiest way to enjoy them? A strawberry-rhubarb sauce that needs only one more ingredient: sugar.
Spoon the sauce over ice cream or thick slices of pound cake or angel food cake. You can also layer it with vanilla wafers and vanilla pudding, then chill before serving.
Here’s a very flexible recipe. Cut rhubarb in bigger chunks? No problem. Up the amount of strawberries a bit? Not a crisis. How much sugar you use, though, will depend on the berries’ sweetness and how you plan to use the sauce.
If paired with sweet cookies (vanilla wafers, gingersnaps) and a sweet pudding, you should cut back on the sugar a bit to keep the tart-sweet balance. Or keep it sweet, as we did, when we layered sauce and vanilla wafers with some thick, plain Greek yogurt for a sweet, tangy, tart dessert.
3-Ingredient Strawberry-Rhubarb Sauce
Makes: About 3 cups sauce
1 pound fresh rhubarb, 8 to 10 stalks
1/3 to 1/2 cup granulated sugar, about
1 pint fresh strawberries
- Rinse rhubarb. Trim stalk bottoms and any leaves off the top. Cut in 1-inch chunks. You should have 3 1/2 to 4 cups chunks.
- Place rhubarb, sugar and about 3 tablespoons water in a saucepan or deep skillet. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally (8 to 10 minutes). Watch carefully so mixture does not burn; add another tablespoon of water if mixture dries out too much.
- Wash strawberries, remove stems and halve. When rhubarb begins to soften and break down, add strawberries. Cook another 5 minutes until berries soften but somewhat chunky.
- Remove from heat. Check tart-sweet balance. Adjust sweetness if needed. Cool. Store in the refrigerator. Photos by Judy Hevrdejs