This blog post is part of a summer series, focusing on how to prepare and cook produce from a crop share. As a first time Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) member, Danielle Calkins, Assistant Editor-Digital for the Home & Garden team, will be testing out fresh recipes bi-weekly as she picks up her crops. You can read about her recipes below, and more about the crops she’ll cook with on the Birds & Blooms blog: Crop Share: Rhubarb.
Well, first there were spinach meatballs, then there was spicy and savory steamed kale, and now I’ve whipped up a fantastic batch of Nutty Rhubarb muffins, which really is the cherry-on-top of my crop share experience.
I can’t tell you how much I’ve enjoyed pairing my CSA veggies with fresh and new recipes. I had another first this week when I decided to tackle my three stalks of fresh rhubarb to make muffins. I have had rhubarb once, and only once, in a combo strawberry-rhubarb pie, but I’ve never prepared it myself (and to tell you the truth, I wasn’t sure where to start).
First, clean your rhubarb, and make sure to peel off any thin threads that are on the skin. I found it easiest to start chopping my rhubarb, which loosened the outer layer, making it easy to peel off. Or use a vegetable peeler. For other easy tips on buying and storing rhubarb visit: Birds & Blooms Blog.
Next, combine ¾ cup packed brown sugar, ½ cup of buttermilk, 1/3 cup canola oil, 1 egg (beaten) and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Whisk together.
In a separate bowl, combine 2 cups flour, ½ teaspoon baking soda and ½ teaspoon of salt. Add your egg mixture and stir. Then add your chopped rhubarb (1 cup) and ½ cup of chopped nuts.
Now, the final step—once your muffin tins are filled, combine ¼ cup brown sugar, ¼ cup chopped nuts and ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon in a separate bowl then sprinkle over the top of your muffins BEFORE BAKING.
Now, I must admit, for a brief moment my mind blanked and I simply overlooking the recipe, missing this last step. After baking the muffins for 20 minutes at 375 degrees I had one of those dreaded cooking moments where you realize you’ve forgot a step. It wasn’t an error that ruined the muffins, but it was one that would have made these tiny morsels even better if I had not overlooked it.
So I improvised—I still combined the topping mix and sprinkled it over the already-cooked muffins. I set my broiler on high and put the muffins back in the oven for just a couple minutes to let the brown sugar mixture bubble and melt. Who’s to say if these turned out as good as the original recipe, but hey, they sure tasted yummy to me.
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