March 28th, 2011

Rhubarb, Pecan and Buttermilk Pudding; Buttermilk Ice Cream

Glorious rhubarb! It’s amazing how one’s tastes evolve, change and even develop as you get older. At first I thought if I do not like something then that is it, I will never like it, however I’m proven wrong. That fact comes with age…does that mean that I’m getting old?? Well finding a few gray hairs was a bit of a shock to the system – I thought I will never “grow up”, be responsible and like rhubarb! BUT I do now. If that is a sign of ageing then I do not mind it too much.

As a child and even in my twenties I would pull the ugliest faces when I was offered anything made with rhubarb, but now I think it’s “cool” and I’d even go as far as saying it’s delicious. Especially my infamous rhubarb and vanilla jam.

With that in mind I think tomorrow is jam making day, as Piers from High House Farm delivered a huge amount of fresh rhubarb this week. It’s slightly taken over the fridge; it’s like a jungle of rhubarb in there, so I’d best make some jam and this delicious rhubarb, pecan and buttermilk pudding. Mmm…

We went to visit Piers at the glorious High House Farm, having wanted to visit for quite some time, but time is always a constraint! Mondays at the moment are our only day off so we make use of this time to visit local attractions, farms and find new ingredients to play with. We waited a while for this rhubarb to be ready and finally the time has come. After visiting Piers and seeing how beautiful these plants are kept, one cannot feel completely obliged to cook something delicious with it.

All of High House Farm’s rhubarb is outdoor grown so the flavour is earthy, tangy and robust. This rhubarb is the real deal. Seeing the boxes piled high we asked where they were all destined for and it was wonderful to hear they are all going to nearby local homes, pubs, shops and restaurants in the local area. It is lovely to hear that local people will benefit from using and enjoying the rhubarb, and at least it’s not travelling hundreds of miles to be kept in cold stores for weeks.

A few outdoor rhubarb facts..

  • Outdoor rhubarb with its earthy and gutsy taste is available from March till late May.
  • Their stems are slightly thicker and the skin is stringy than forced rhubarb, hence peeling is required.
  • Outdoor rhubarb is easy to grow and every kitchen garden should have a crown or two for personal consumption.
  • Rhubarb is classed as a vegetable.
  • The leaves are toxic and should be removed before cooking.
  • The natural tartness of rhubarb makes it an ideal ingredient for either sweet or savoury dishes.

Rhubarb and Buttermilk Pudding

  • 225g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 300g light brown sugar
  • Seeds of one vanilla pod
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 270ml buttermilk
  • 300g self-raising flour
  • 1tsp bicarb of soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1tsp ground ginger
  • 150g pecan nuts, roughly chopped
  • 400g fresh rhubarb

Pre-heat the oven to 160°C and grease 12 x 8cm in diameter rubber muffin moulds.

Cream the butter, vanilla and sugar until pale and fluffy, add the eggs one at a time and mix well after each addition. Stir in the buttermilk.

Sift the flour, bicarb of soda, ground ginger, salt and baking powder over the creamed butter mix, and fold in using a large metal spoon.

Wash and cut the rhubarb into slices and mix with the pecan nuts. Spoon a bit of the batter into the moulds followed by a few bits of the rhubarb and pecans, and fill the mould with more batter. Divide the remaining rhubarb and pecans between the moulds and place them on top.

Bake the Puddings for 25 – 30 minutes in the preheated oven.

Let them cool before removing from the moulds.

Serve slightly warm with the buttermilk ice cream.

Buttermilk Ice Cream

  • 700ml buttermilk
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 200ml whipping cream
  • 25ml fresh lemon juice

Mix all the ingredients, refrigerate and rest for 1 hour.

Churn the ice cream using an ice-cream machine. Please read the manufactures instuctions to use.

Keep the ice-cream frozen until needed.

Makes 12 puddings

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4 Comments to “Rhubarb, Pecan and Buttermilk Pudding; Buttermilk Ice Cream”

  1. Chantelle says:

    I’ve just made this with blueberries, almonds and almond milk as I have plenty of these items in the kitchen at the moment and it turned out perfectly!! so light and fruity. I sprinkled a mixture of chopped smoked almonds and demerara sugar on the top aswell for a nice crumbly texture and served with a blueberry and creme fraiche sorbet. Lovely recipe, thank you.

  2. Made the puddings and ice cream for my mother-in-law on Mothers’ Day. Fantastic combination of flavours and went down a treat! Thanks for the brownie points!

  3. Heavy rains may be deterring me venturing out to the garden, but this recipe and a new crop of Rhubarb has me rethinking my position. Lovely recipe, as always.

  4. Ruth says:

    Oh how I love rhubarb, and pairing it with buttermilk icecream just seems so right. I love the picture of the finished plate. Keep the good stuff coming!

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