by Camilla - foodaroundblog
Vegetable or fruit? This is the question! Technically a vegetable, but more often eaten as a fruit..we are speaking about rhubarb! Here in England is very very popular, but in Italy it is not so easy to find. I have searched in various foodblogs of my compatriots and I have discovered that it is a rare and much sought-after delicacy, so much so that when someone manages to get hold of a fair amount, immediately buys it up!
My ignorance towards the rhubarb was, until last week,…absolute! Never seen before, never tasted, never smelled, never stumbled onto a rhubarb recipe! Candy rhubarb, that’s the only information I could fish in my brain file…but the folder was miserably empty! Only a vaguely vintage hint! The opportunity to learn something about this vegetable has arrived, as always, thanks to shopping at farmers’ markets in the neighborhood of Summertown in Oxford.
Took a nice and beautiful pinkish hue bunch, I slipped in a tunnel of recipes, herbal medicine, Chinese medicine, jams, preserves, liqueurs digestive, passing from Milan, Giuseppe Verdi, Arturo Toscanini e Boccioni…yikes!
Among all the preparations I have chosen to inaugurate my journey to discover the rhubarb with a Anglo-Saxon cuisine’s classic: the crumble. After reading copious amounts of recipes and variations, both for the crumble, as for the fruit filling I have made a good mix of all the knowledge and here is my recipe:
For the crumble:
100 grams of flour
100 grams of almond flour
100 grams of brown sugar
100 grams of butter
For the filling:
400 grams of rhubarb cleaned and cut into chunks
50 grams of strawberries cleaned and cut into chunks
100 grams of caster sugar
the juice of half a lemon
Preheat the oven to 180 °. In a bowl, put rhubarb and strawberries to soak with sugar and lemon. Meanwhile, prepare the crumble topping by combining all ingredients quickly until the mixture is sandy. Butter a baking dish, spread the fruit on the bottom and cover with the mixture: bake, wait, enjoy! (It will be ready when the crumble is golden). The sour taste of rhubarb goes well with the sweet cover, lemon and sugar for the filling should be measured out to taste. The accompaniment with a cream or a vanilla ice cream’s tablespoon is delicious.
I have named Milan, Giuseppe Verdi and Boccioni, in this rhubarb post .. what about them?
I discovered an interesting story that has as a theater Milan and its famous coffee “Zucca in Galleria”, in the heart of the city just a few steps from the Duomo. In that cafe, once, Verdi and Toscanini used to linger after leaving the Scala Theatre, in that cafe, the painter Boccioni portrayed the famous “Rissa in Galleria” (td. riot in the arcade), in that cafe, today as once, they serve the rhubarb liqueur Zucca, invented in 1845 by Ettore Zucca using rhubarb plants then imported from China. The brand is clearly visible by anyone traveling to the Vittorio Emanuele arcade and marks a milestone for those who want to learn more about Milan.