Rhubarb Cherry Hibiscus Crumble

By • June 8, 2012 • 17 Comments



Author Notes: I love a good crumble (or crisp, if you like)- warm fruit, gooey yet still identifiable, a perfectly sweet topping with a nice bit of crunch, some ice cream or whipped cream to serve as a temperature foil.
This past weekend at our local farmers market, I went hog-wild while buying rhubarb. Pounds and pounds came home with me, and despite a serious amount of jam-making, I found what seemed like an undiminished pile in my fridge last night. I remembered reading about a rhubarb-hibiscus compote Kim Boyce makes and thought a crumble working off of that foundation would be marvelous. Bing cherries and almonds sounded great as additions too, and they were!
em-i-lis

Food52 Review: WHO: Em-i-lis is a mom, cook, and writer living in Washington, DC.
WHAT: A sweet-tart, nutty crumble -- with hibiscus for je ne sais quoi.
HOW: Toss your fruit and hibiscus with some sugar, let it roast, then top with your whole wheat flour-oat-almond topping and bake until runny and toasty.
WHY WE LOVE IT: This is the perfect dessert to bake in the fleeting moments that rhubarb and cherries' seasons overlap; rhubarb's tartness tames the cherries' sweetness, and the hibiscus keeps you digging your spoon in until the whole thing is magically gone.
A&M

Makes 1 8x8" square crumble

For the fruit filling

  • 6 cups chopped rhubarb (~3/4? cubes), divided
  • 20 Bing cherries, pitted and halved
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons hibiscus tea leaves (I use The Republic of Tea Natural Hibiscus loose leaf herbal; you can also use 8 hibiscus flowers, as does Kim Boyce)
  1. Preheat the oven to 400, and get out an 8? square glass baking dish. In a medium, non-reactive, heavy-bottomed saucepan set over medium-low heat, put 4 cups of the chopped rhubarb, the cherries, 1 packed cup of brown sugar and the hibiscus. Stir to combine everything, cover, and cook until the rhubarb releases its liquid and starts to break down, about 10-12 minutes.
  2. Uncover the pot, add the remaining 2 c of chopped rhubarb, stir to combine, and remove from heat. Set aside.

For the topping

  • ½ cups whole wheat flour
  • ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cups rolled oats (not quick- or instant)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cups sliced almonds
  • ½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • pinches salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter, set out on the counter when you start making this dessert- you want it to be cool but pliable
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the whole wheat and all-purpose flours, the oats,brown sugar, almonds, cinnamon and salt. With your fingers or a pastry cutter, blend in the butter until you have a crumbly mixture in which the butter is as uniformly distributed as possible.
  2. Pour the fruit filling into your baking dish and then pour the crumble topping evenly over the top. Place the dish into the oven and bake for 22 minutes. (I turned the heat up to 425 after 20 minutes to give it an extra boost of heat at the end). Some of the crumble topping will sink into the fruit compote. Yum!
  3. Serve with vanilla ice cream or with a lightly sweetened whipped cream with a little almond extract blended in (I used about 1/4 tsp of almond extract in mine).
Jump to Comments (17)

Comments (17) Questions (0)

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3 months ago Leslee Faubert

Has anyone used frozen cherries?

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3 months ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I never have but imagine they'd work fine! If you thaw them first, drain the excess liquid.

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about 1 year ago Julie Olson

Will this still taste good without hibiscus tea leaves? I have all the ingredients except the tea, and I live in a rural area where that ingredient would be hard to find.

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about 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Yes, definitely!! The tea adds a bit of mystery and tang but it isn't critical so if you have the rest, go for it!! I hope you enjoy it- let me know. :)

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about 1 year ago utchimama

This recipe looks amazing and I really want to try to make this! However, I live in Thailand and there is no rhubarb here (I know..so sad:() Is there anything else that I could use to substitute for rhubarb??? Thank you very much! can't wait to try to make this!!

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about 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

hi utchimama, thank you so much!! although rhubarb is a fairly unique ingredient, i think you might substitute a tart apple in its place. not-too-ripe peaches or nectarines might work too. what do others think?
thanks again, let me know what you try!! :)

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about 1 year ago gttebykate

This recipe sounds amazing and I plan to make it this weekend. Quick question about the tea - is it 2-3 tablespoons of brewed tea or tea leaves? Thanks!

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about 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

hi gttebykate! thanks so much for your note. i do hope you like the crumble. it's just the tea leaves!

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about 1 year ago gttebykate

Wonderful, thank you!

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about 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

you bet!

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about 1 year ago The Foodies' Kitchen

This combination sounds heavenly! Hibiscus and Rhubarb... plus cherry! Now You'll get me looking for some cherries so I can prepare it. Looks amazing!

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about 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you, Kitty!! I hope you find the cherries and enjoy! :)

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about 1 year ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

I remember this fondly; the hibiscus tea sounded so interesting. Just this morning I was casting about for a dessert for later this week. Thank you, Em!

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about 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much, Cynthia!!

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over 2 years ago EmilyC

I saved it...I think the addition of cherry and almond with rhubarb is inspired. I've only had rhubarb with stawberries and raspberries, but the cherries sound lovely! Hope you enjoy the collards, by the way!

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over 2 years ago EmilyC

This looks and sounds so delicious!

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over 2 years ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you so much, EmilyC! If you make it, I hope you enjoy!
I'm making your collards and corn dish tonight! :)