A few weeks ago my friends and I went up to Oaks Head, Maine to spend the weekend at a house on the ocean that Zoe’s parents were renting. It was a perfect Maine weekend complete with good friends, hiking, beautiful views, and a barbecue on the water. It was so nice to get out of the city, and really made me miss the summers I spent in Maine working on the lakes.
As care packages full of “crack brownies” and lemon bread over the past seven years have taught me, Zoe’s mom is a great cook. While I showed up with my usual arsenal of gluten-free vegan snacks, her parents did an amazing job of making sure I had more than enough to eat. The only thing I wasn’t able to eat was her famous rhubarb crisp, and it looked and smelled so good that I decided on the spot that I’d have to re-create a vegan, gluten-free version of my own to see what I was missing out on.
Before making this recipe I had never had rhubarb crisp before. Actually, I had never had any form of rhubarb before in my life. Up until last year, I didn’t even really know what it was, and am slightly embarrassed to admit that when I was little I thought it was just fancy red celery. But, after that weekend I was determined to branch out and give it a try and I am beyond happy that I did.
The crisp was perfectly tart with a hint of sweetness and a crunchy oat streusel topping. I served it warm with a scoop of vegan ice cream, and I was in heaven. While I’m sure I’ll never be able to rival Zoe’s mom’s recipe, I was thrilled with the result. In an effort to stop myself from eating all four I gave some away to my friend, and apparently multiple people stopped her on her walk home to comment on how delicious it looked! This definitely is a great way to sneak more vegetables into your day (even though theres a little sugar mixed in). It makes a delicious dessert, or you can skip the ice cream and have it for breakfast (or don’t skip the ice cream and treat yo’ self, no judgements). Does anyone have any other favorite ways to cook rhubarb? I’m so curious to learn what I’ve been missing out on all these years!
For the rhubarb filling:
- 2.5 cups rhubarb, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1.5 tbsp corn starch
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- 1 tbsp fresh orange juice
- 3 tbsp gluten free flour ( I used 1 tbsp almond flour and 2 tbsp of oat flour, but it’s really just for thickening and any gluten free flour will work)
For the oat topping:
- 3/4 cup gluten-free oats
- 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup oat flour (again, really any gluten-free flour of your choice will work)
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/4 cup walnut pieces (optional)
- Preheat oven to 375F
- Place chopped rhubarb in a large mixing bowl and toss with sugar, corn starch, orange juice, orange zest and flour until rhubarb pieces are well coated
- In a separate mixing bowl combine the oats, coconut oil, cinnamon, brown sugar, flour, maple syrup and walnuts until well mixed
- Transfer rhubarb filling into a baking dish (I made mine in 4 individual ramekins, but it could just as easily be made in one 8″ x 8″ baking dish)
- Spoon the oat topping on top of the rhubarb filling, making sure to coat it evenly
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until topping has turned a nice golden brown and the filling is bubbling around the edges
- Allow to cool slightly, serve with a scoop of your favorite vegan ice cream, and enjoy!