Dinner Party Series: Part 3

Dessert: Rhubarb and Strawberry Crumble

This is an extremely yummy dessert that is super easy and tastes great.   The best thing about it (not to mention the yummo factor) is that it can all be prepared ahead, you have heaps of amazing custard left over and you can freeze the crumble mix for next time!  It is totally adaptable as well so that if you can’t get fresh rhubarb or strawberries, you can substitute with any fruit you like i.e pears and blueberries, mango and pineapple to name a few.  It can also be eaten hot or cold and looks really pretty all layered in the glass.

You will need:

Serves 4

For the Creme Anglaise (custard)

5 egg yolks
2 cups of cream
1/4 cup of castor sugar
1 vanilla bean, split in 1/2 and seeds scraped

For the Crumble

2 tbs self raising flour
2tbs demerara sugar (raw is fine)
1/4 cup of walnuts, toasted and chopped
20gm chilled unsalted butter

For the Fruit
1 bunch of rhubarb
1 punnet strawberries
zest and juice of 1 orange
1/4 cup demerara sugar

To make the custard, whisk the egg yolks and castor sugar together until well combined and nice and creamy.  Gently heat the cream and vanilla pod and seeds in a saucepan until just below boiling point.  Slowly pour the cream mixture over the egg yolks, whisking the whole time.

Pour the entire mixture into a clean saucepan and heat very gently, stirring with a wooden spoon.  Stir the mixture for approx 5-6 minutes until the mixture coats the back of the spoon.  It is very important to be patient and not rush the process as the eggs can scramble.  Just follow the instuctions, sip on your wine and enjoy the process!

Once coating the back of the spoon, remove from the heat and strain into a jug.  Cover the surface with cling wrap, this will stop a skin forming, and set aside.

To make the crumble, preheat the oven to 180 degrees.  Place the flour, sugar and walnuts in a food processor and pulse a couple of times. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture comes together in clumps.  Spread the mixture on a baking tray lined with baking paper.  Bake in a the oven for 15 minutes or until golden, stirring a couple of times so that it cooks evenly.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before crumbling the mixture with your finger tips.  ( You won’t need all the crumble, so I freeze 1/2 in a zip lock bag).

To prepare the fruit, wash and trim the rhubarb into 5cm batons.  Place on a lined baking tray.  Top with the washed and halved strawberries, orange juice and grated orange zest.  Sprinkle with the sugar,  cover the tray with foil and bake in the oven for 15 minutes.

To assemble the dish, place a little custard in the bottom of four glasses.  Divide and arrange the rhubarb and strawberries in the glasses and top with a little more custard.  Sprinkle generously with the crumble mixture and serve.