Make these delicious Rhubarb Crumble Squares before it’s too late!
You know that the bounty of summer produce is on it’s way when rhubarb is ready for picking! One of the first local crops around here, I get mine from my Mother-in-law’s backyard! You may not recognize it in the yard, it looks a lot like a hosta with huge elephant-ear leaves. Push the leaves aside and when ripe, the bright red stalks will tell you it’s rhubarb. Grab and give a good pull!
Rhubarb is truly one of my favourites – sour and sweet at the same time. Alone it can be roasted or stewed to make a delicious filling/sauce for desserts or as a side for meat. If combined with another sweeter fruit, like strawberries, it’s a delicious filling for Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie or Strawberry-Lime Galette. I’ve used rhubarb in baking quite a lot, but I must say these Rhubarb Crumble Squares are my new favourite!
What is rhubarb? Technically it’s a vegetable, though it’s usually used as a fruit. The stalk is the only edible part of the plant, with the leaves being quite toxic. Rhubarb is really sour when raw, you’ll need to cook it with sugar or with other sweeter fruits.
You’re going to want to make these bars… now! The combination of rhubarb filling with oatmeal-coconut crust and crumble topping is totally delicious.
If you’re lucky enough to have too much fresh rhubarb, I chop it into 1″ cubes, measure out 2 cups (for squares) or 4 cups (for pies) and pop it into a freezer bag. Then, you’re always ready to bake with rhubarb all-year round!
- 2 cups chopped fresh rhubarb
- 1 Tbsp water
- 3 Tbsp sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- pinch nutmeg
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- ½ cup sweetened shredded coconut
- 1 cup salted butter, cold, cut into ½ inch pieces
- In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine filling ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to med-low and simmer until rhubarb is tender and broken down, about 8-12 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter or spray a 8x8-inch baking pan.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar and coconut. Add cold butter and work into the dry ingredients with your fingers until mixture looks like coarse meal the size of peas. Reserve 2 cups of crumble, set aside.
- Press remaining oat mixture into bottom of prepared baking pan. Evenly spread rhubarb filling onto bottom crust. Top filling with reserved crumble. Bake 40-45 minutes until top is slightly brown. Let cool completely before cutting into squares.