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Lavender-Rhubarb Crumble

June 28, 2011

This spring I began to garden a corner of the empty lot next to our building. This land was once part of our building, but back in the 1930s a neighbor began to use it for a victory garden. Interestingly, the neighbor then claimed possession of the land through adverse possession. When a developer purchased our building in 2005, he ceded the land to the new owners to clear up the title and make it easy to convert the building into saleable condos. Understandable, but frustrating, especially since by that point the garden had been overtaken by a serious jungle.

The owners cleared the jungle last summer and were considerate enough to fence off a corner for my gardening use. Here’s a snapshot of what I’ve been able to do with it so far, including for contrast some of the jungle that’s grown back in the past year. Jungles are persistent.

Our neighbors are nervous about us growing anything edible on this land, since we don’t know if the soil is ok, but I’m not concerned. So I’ve snuck a few edible plants in, including rhubarb in the back corner and some lavender in the middle. The rhubarb isn’t big enough to harvest yet – although it is rapidly getting there – but the lavender definitely is, especially considering how far a little lavender will go

In honor of our rhubarb and to use a bit of lavender, we made a rhubarb-lavender crumble for my birthday yesterday. This recipe is adapted from this one posted to The Kitchn back in 2008.

To make it, you’ll of course need a rhubarb filling:

  • 2 pounds rhubarb, cleaned and chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 tbsp fresh lavender buds or 2 tsp dried lavender buds, diced and smushed in your hands to release oils
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey

And then the ingredients for the crumble topping:

  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp cinammon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp diced ginger
  • 1 cardomom pod, opened and ground and with outside discarded

And for the final topping you’ll have to gather:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

And here’s what you’ll do:

  • Combine all of the rhubarb filling ingredients in one bowl, all of the crumble ingredients in another bowl, and all of the final topping ingredients in a third bowl.
  • Pour the rhubarb filling into a buttered pan and then spread on top first the crumble and then the final topping.
  • Bake at 375 for 40 minutes, or until the top begins to brown.
  • Serve with vanilla ice cream.

As you can see, this crumble is easy – so easy, in fact, that you might even call it a piece of cake.

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 28, 2011 2:01 am

    might try this tomorrow. cuz i have lots of rhubarb and lavender for some reason

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