This is not a good year for rhubarb, or at least it isn’t for mine, I’m not sure about anyone else’s. Sadly, this year’s crop is pathetically tiny. I planted my rhubarb several years ago, and was always too afraid to use it, because I wasn’t sure how to properly cut it. Then my brother and I took the time to do some research one day when he was visiting, and found that harvesting rhubarb is really quite simple. I wrote about it HERE, so I won’t bore you with all of the details again. The last thing I want to do is put y’all to sleep.
Since my brother passed away, rhubarb has come to mean something completely different to me. Before it was just something to toss together with some strawberries because it was there and it needed to be used. Now it is a memory of an experience I had with my brother, that didn’t end with either of us bleeding, screaming bloody murder, or not talking to one another for days because someone’s blankey had to be knotted back together yet again.
Rhubarb is now something I cry over as I carefully chop it off at the base, being careful to discard the leaves so that no critters accidentally become poisoned. Every stalk I harvest reminds me of my brother, and how he spent the time to help me do something the right way, even though he had no idea what the right way was. He used the occasion to learn with me, so that we could both benefit from the experience.
I’m pretty sure that if Matt were here, he would have loved trying this ice cream. Sure he would have stuck his nose up at it’s pink coloring, but he wouldn’t have let that stop him from slowly eating the entire bowl, after he let is get super melty of course. You see, even though he and I were so similar in many ways, there were still so many other ways we could be totally opposite. I will always be the girl who dreams of eating her ice cream in a freezer, while he was the boy who had to let his ice cream sit for 20 minutes before it was safe to eat. I miss my Big Bubba so much, even if he didn’t know how to eat ice cream and he destroyed my beloved blankey beyond all recognition.
- 1/2 Cup Finely Diced Rhubarb
- 1 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 Cup Water
- 1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt
- 1 Cup Milk
- 2 Cups Heavy Whipping Cream
- 1 Tablespoon Vanilla
- Pink or Red Food Coloring
- Combine the rhubarb, sugar, water, and sea salt in a medium non-stick saucepan.
- Cook on high heat for 12 minutes, stirring often.
- Turn the heat off, and slowly whisk in the milk, followed by the heavy cream and the vanilla.
- Add the food coloring a little bit at a time, until you reach the shade of pink you desire.
- Pour the liquid into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and then refrigerate overnight.
- Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and churn for 30 minutes.
- If using rhubarb from your garden, make sure to discard the leaves because they are poisonous.
- If you are buying rhubarb at your local market, you will only need two regular size stalks for this recipe.
- I used bright pink gel food coloring in this recipe. A little food coloring goes a long way, so just add a little dot at a time.
- Refrigerate the ice cream mixture overnight in a glass oven-safe bowl; the food coloring will discolor a plastic bowl.
- After you churn the ice cream, place it in a freezer safe container, and then let it freeze for at least 12 to 24 hours before serving.
- Serve topped with Grape Nuts or Granola
- Double the amount of rhubarb in this recipe if you prefer tangy ice cream.
I’ll be joining the Fiesta Friday Link Party today. Head on over HERE to see what everyone else is bringing to the celebration.
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