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Monday, July 14, 2014

Yummmmm! This dish can easily replace dinner on those hot nights when cooking just seems like it’s too much bother. It’s so cool and creamy, and just seems to hit the right spot for when you need something delicious, but it’s just to hot to cook!

About 10 years ago my Mom, my three chicklets and I went to Arizona to visit some of our cousins. Pat and June were about 8 years older than my Mom and they had been close all of their lives. They lived in Strawberry, Arizona which is so beautiful and picturesque. We enjoyed our visit immensely despite the stifling heat!                                                                  

We took my kids to several monuments where they gleaned copious amounts of information, I'll swear they are living sponges. They took albums full of photos, purchased post cards, books, and other things pertaining to each place, which turned out great since they eventually used them in reports for school.                                                                                                                                                  

June and Pat had a very nice home on a very decent sized piece of property in Strawberry. There was room for a great kitchen garden, and wonderful areas to just sit and enjoy the cooled off evening. We sat out after dinner while Pat puttered and watered, weeded and whatnot. 


June was a very good cook, my only objection was that the blasted oven was on every day! Every day! Even if it was 110+!!! I tried to suggest lighter eating, you know, like straight out of the freezer! I would have sprung for individual ice picks! But no. We had hot baked casseroles every night. Yah... no. I just had to quit eating it was so blasted hot.
One of the evenings while my Mom and June were finishing cleaning up in the kitchen, there was the funniest verbal exchange going on, Candice and I nearly split our sides laughing. Both June and my Mom (Shirley) were totally oblivious to the other's questions and consternations due to the total lack of response from the other. First of all, take into consideration that these two women were less than two feet from each other. It went something like this:

June-"Let's put the leftovers into these containers, then I'll make room for them in the fridge."
Shirley-"What do you want to do with the leftovers?"
June-"Okay, I've made room in the fridge for the leftovers"
Shirley-"What are we doing with the leftovers? Are we keeping them?"
June- " Okay, I guess these containers will be alright, we can toss the rest of the green salad."
Shirley- "What are we doing with the rhubarb?"
June-(yelling out of the window to Pat), "Don't you water those vegetables at night! I don't want mold or rot settin' in!"
Shirley- "What are we doing with the rhubarb?"
June- " I swear I can talk right into that man's ear and he won't hear me!"
Shirley-" What do you want to do with the rhubarb?"
June- " Oh, we have some rhubarb left. Well, it'll go good over ice cream tomorrow night, if Pat doesn't find it before then! Let's put that into this container, then it can go in the fridge."

I am not joking! So Candice and I have rounds of "What do you want to do with the rhubarb?" scenarios while at my Mom's house. And sometimes, she just stands there looking at us in confusion which of course makes it all the funnier!

So here's what I've done with the rhubarb!

Rhubarb Mousse

Ingredients:                                                                   Makes about 8 -  1/2 cup servings
  • 1 lb. rhubarb
  • scant 1/4 cup water
  • ½ cup granulated sugar 
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Optional:
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
          whipped cream to garnish

Method:

1. Bring rhubarb, salt, 1/2 cup sugar and water to a boil in a 2 quart saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low, cover the pot with several thicknesses of paper toweling or a clean dish towel and then the pot's lid, (this keeps condensation from forming, dripping into and diluting your rhubarb sauce), then cook until tender, about 4-5 minutes. The ending result should yield about 4 cups.
2. Transfer rhubarb mixture to a blender and process until smooth.
3. Whisk the rhubarb puree, and the 2 egg yolks together in the saucepan and return to medium heat, cook while whisking constantly until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes or so. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool completely.
4. In your stand mixer bowl, whip the 2 egg whites until stiff but not dry. Transfer to a large bowl, and by hand fold in the rhubarb mixture until combined, some white streaks are normal. Set aside.
5. No need to clean out the bowl from the egg whites, BUT! you cannot whip the cream first as the fat will prevent you from whipping the whites, so do the whites first, then whip the heavy whipping cream, slowly adding in the 2 Tablespoons of sugar until firm peaks have formed. Fold the whipped cream into the rhubarb mixture, some streaking is fine. 
Spoon mousse into individual cups and chill well.

This trick works so well, I simply put a canning funnel with a large 
opening into the dessert dish first, then scoop in the mousse. 
When removing the funnel you are left with clean dish sides!


Enjoy!


Source: Debbie Wells (Servings: 4 to 6)