Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble

I could not think of a more appropriate recipe to post on the Fourth of July.  Strawberry rhubarb crumble has got to be one of my favorite summer time desserts.  And that’s a lot to say for a self-proclaimed chocoholic. 

A few weeks ago, the Local Farm Foodie family hit the road to check out an amazing farmers market in Minnesota.  Well, actually the trip was a surprise visit for my mom’s 70th birthday at a cabin on Big Floyd Lake.  But we had a blast visiting the Lakes Area Farmers Market nearby.

Getting a caricature made for Grandma at the farmers market

I was all excited to see what was in season in this neck of the woods.  But actually, while our growing season has been in full swing in Arizona, their growing season has just started.  So not a whole lot of fresh produce was available, other than the largest asparagus and rhubarb I’d ever seen.  I have recently discovered rhubarb (thanks to my friend, Becky), never really being exposed to it growing up in Hawaii.   According to my stepdad, the soil and climate in these parts make for the best rhubarb.  He said that as a kid he used to dip raw rhubarb in sugar and chew it.  The irony is that we used to chew on raw sugar cane as kids in Hawaii.  My sister was kind enough to buy me two pounds of rhubarb.  I “might” have smuggled some of it home in my luggage. 😉  

Aside from celebrating my mom’s birthday, one of the best parts of the trip was visiting with my mom’s friends, Mike and Dolores, a husband and wife who run a small family farm just down the street.  Mike grew up on a farm.  When he retired from his telecommunications job twenty years ago, he decided to return to his roots, and started a farm of his own.  Now in their eighties, they still tend to a small crop and some livestock.  Mike remains active walking ten miles a day, while Dolores paints from her lovely flower garden in her spare time.  They have a wheel barrel roadside stand in front of their farm, and customers pay by an honor system.  Did I mention that no one locks their doors in these parts?  A difficult concept for me to grasp when my husband had his catalytic converter stolen off his parked car at home.  So, if you’re in the mood for some beautiful scenery, never ending lakes, and amazing rhubarb, be sure to visit Detroit Lakes, Minnesota.   This recipe will always remind us of our wonderful trip.      

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble
adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Crumble:
1 cup flour
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
3 T sugar
3 T raw sugar
Zest of one lemon
1 stick butter, melted

Filling:
1 1/2 cups rhubarb, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 quart strawberries, hulled and quartered
Juice of one lemon
1/2 cup sugar
3 T cornstarch (I recommend arrowroot powder)
Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  For the crumble:  in a mixing bowl combine first six ingredients, then stir in the melted butter. Mixture should have a crumbly texture.  Place bowl in refrigerator until ready.

For the filling: combine all ingredients in a 9 inch pie pan (I used an oval baking dish for more depth).

Remove the crumble from the refrigerator, and sprinkle a thick layer of crumbs evenly over the filling.  Place on top of a baking sheet, and bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until top is golden brown and fruit filling is bubbling along the sides. 

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