The first time I heard of ‘rhubarb soup’, I was skeptical that was a real dish. I was introduced to it through my Danish friend Anne, who once confused a toilet brush for a dishwashing brush in a demonstration of the ‘American’ kitchen to her visiting mother. Despite her less than stellar reputation around the kitchen, it turns out she can cook – she served us an amazing meal and an even better dessert.
Indeed, rhubarb soup turned out to be one of the best desserts I have ever had.
Rhubarb is in season in early spring, so hurry up and make this dish because it is wonderfully refreshing and really easy to make. I would even stock up my freezer with rhubarb so I can make this dish again.
- • 2 lbs. (1 kg) rhubarb, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
- • 8.8 oz. (250 grams) sugar
- • 2 vanilla pods, flaked and vanilla beans scraped
- • 10 oz. (300 ml) water
- • 3 dried figs
- • ½ tablespoon butter
- • 6 scoops vanilla ice cream
- • 6 sprigs of mint
- 1. Clean and cut the rhubarb into 3/4 inch pieces, and throw it in a pot with water, sugar, whole vanilla pods and scraped vanilla beans. Heat the mixture in the pot and let simmer for about 10 min.
- 2. Strain the rhubarb liquid (the ‘soup’) into a bowl, and transfer the rhubarb pieces that are retained (the ‘compote’) into another bowl, removing the vanilla pods. Let both bowls cool off in the refrigerator for a few hours or over night.
- 3. Cut the stems off the figs and flatten each fig so the stem is centered. Cut the figs into small “pizza slices” for a consistent look. Heat the butter in a small pan and sauté the figs for a few minutes or until browned. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel.
- 4. Divide the cold rhubarb soup into six bowls or deep plates, and add the compote on top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Sprinkle with caramelized figs and garnish with a sprig of mint.