Rhubarb Bavarian Cream
Rhubarb is typically treated like a fruit in the kitchen but it is actually a vegetable. Combine those ruby red stalks with a little sugar and you are handed a small piece of heaven. Recently I was given a packet of vintage recipes and amongst many gems was a recipe for rhubarb Bavarian cream. I was surprised to find a Bavarian cream recipe in this packet of recipes but discovered that the original Fanny Farmer cookbook introduced this recipe in 1896. Although I must confess, I messed with this recipe slightly. I used a classic Bavarian cream recipe and topped it with roasted rhubarb.
Bavarian cream can be served by itself or with fruit but is most often found between layers of cake or torte because the gelatin makes slicing it a breeze.
- Egg yolks - 4, from large eggs
- Sugar - 4 ounces, granulated
- Gelatin - 1 tablespoon, unflavored
- Water - 1/4 cup, cold
- Vanilla bean - 1/2, split
- Whole milk - 1 cup
- Heavy cream - 1 cup
- Vanilla - 1/2 teaspoon
- Rhubarb - 1 1/2 cups, roasted & sweetened
- Whip egg yolks and sugar until light and fluffy with hand mixer.
- Sprinkle gelatin over cold water and set aside.
- Break yolks into medium size mixing bowl and whisk. Set aside.
- Add whole milk to 4 quart sauce pan.
- Cut the vanilla bean in half. Slice half of the bean lengthwise and scrape seeds into whole milk, throw in the pods as well.
- Heat the milk to scalding temperature then while you are pouring the hot milk into the yolks (SLOWLY!), whisk continually. Return the entire mixture back to the pan and turn the heat to medium high. Bring the mixture back to scalding temperature continuing to stir. Do not boil. When the cream thickens or coats the back of the spoon it is done. Turn the heat off.
- Remove from heat and remove vanilla pod halves; stir in softened gelatin. Set aside to cool slightly, stirring on occasion.
- Whip heavy cream to soft peaks and set aside.
- Add vanilla extract to the custard.
- When custard has cooled slowly stir into cream.
- Divide into 6 serving bowls.
- Refrigerate for 25-30 minutes.
- Add two tablespoons of sweetened roasted rhubarb into center of each bowl of custard.
- Chill three hours before serving.
How to make cooked, sweetened rhubarb: Place 1 1/2 pounds of rhubarb cut in 1 inch pieces along with 3/4 cup granulated sugar. Bake, covered, at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes if you would like to retain the shape of the rhubarb pieces. If you want a sauce, roast the rhubarb for 45 - 50 minutes. (For every 1/2 pound of rhubarb use 1/4 cup sugar... I like it tart.)