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There are a few pairings in life that just work so well together.  For example Gin and Tonic, Victoria and David Beckham, and, of course,  Rhubarb and custard.

I was never allowed the sweets as a child (anything with colouring in made me go MENTAL) however I did consume a few in later years and you can’t beat a proper rhubarb and custard pudding after a hearty Sunday roast.  There’s just something about the smell and the texture that’s so comforting I bet even Nigella swoons over it.

Now I love me a pudding and I also love a candle so when my lovely friend Carolyn at Burley’s gifts made me aware that the good people at Lily-Flame actually do a Rhubarb and custard candle, OBVS a purchase had to be made pronto.  I’m a massive advocate of shopping local so if you live in the Southwell/Nottingham area go check out Carolyn’s shop.  You can check out Burley’s Gifts Facebook page here, but be warned- even though they’re a gift shop you’re probably more likely to purchase something for yourself!  It just so happened that last week my lovely Dad gave me a load of Rhubarb out of his garden, he’s such a good egg! So, inspired by my new candle and the good life I whipped up this easy dairy-free dessert.  Of course if you aren’t dairy free just substitute the dairy free version for regular custard- it’s SOOOO good, takes no time at all, and smells a bit like Christmas!

What you’ll need:

  • (serves around 4, depending on the size of your serving pots)
  • 5 trimmed stems of Rhubarb (ideally from someone’s garden…and don’t forget to remove the leaves!)
  • 4 tbsp soft brown sugar
  • 1 orange
  • 1 Vanilla pod
  • Grated fresh ginger (about a thumb sized piece)
  • tsp ground Cinamon
  • tbsp water or ginger cordial
  • Carton of dairy-free custard (I either use Provamel organic vanilla or Alpro dairy-free custard)
  • pots to serve
  • Mint and Chia seed garnish optional

Method:

Trim all leaves off the Rhubarb as these are toxic.  I never peel the outer fibers off the rhubarb as I think this keeps the colour and I don’t see the point.  Chop the fruit into small chunks and place in a large pan.

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Juice the orange after grating the zest from it.  Add this to the Rhubarb along with the Cinnamon, grated ginger and seeds scraped from inside the vanilla pod.  Add the water, I decided against the cordial as this was too much Ginger for me this time.  Mix together, cover and cook on a low heat until the Rhubarb is just tender- you want some of the pieces to retain their shape.  Add more sugar if necessary.  You could also try using a different source of sweetener if you wanted, such as Agave Nectar, anything goes!

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Once cooked leave this to cool, then remove the rhubarb from the pan and cook the remaining juices over a high heat until reduced and thick and syrup-like.  Then in 4 or more pots add some of the Rhubarb, dribble over the syrup liquid then layer on the custard and keep going.

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I added a mint leaf (off a plant in MY garden this time) and sprinkled Chia seeds on for decoration. Voila!  An easy dessert recipe that’s high in fiber, vitamins K, C and A, and is also a good source of Calcium too!  In fact Rhubarb is up there with Salmon and Spinach for its Calcium qualities.  BOOM.  No milk required!

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The down side is whenever I light my candle it makes me crave this dessert!  You can purchase a Lily-Flame candle here for £8.95.

Happy eating,

J xx