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Finding harmony between sweet and sour: Rhubarb Crunch time!

May 11, 2013

Many of us grow up and find that foods we couldn’t stand to eat in childhood are now favorites. Many things about us change as we grow and mature, including our taste buds.


Rhubarb is one of those things for a lot of people grow into. It may also be like cilantro in that some people truly have an aversion to something in cilantro that is repulsive. There is even a blog (wouldn’t you know) on it with a list of cilantro-free restaurants!

I decided if there is a blog on cilantro, there’s probably a blog of rhubarb recipes, here.

As a child, we liked to try and chow down some rhubarb raw just for the fun of feeling the pucker up. At our house, my dad liked it, so Mom would make a rhubarb pie especially for him, which I thought was pretty awful. So I went through many years of having nothing to do with rhubarb, until my youngest daughter somehow fell in love with it and during the almost four years she lived at home after college before starting grad school, she bought and started a plant. It is now going gangbusters.

And Doreen found and perfected making this recipe that is too easy, adapted from Mennonite Recipes from the Shenandoah Valley by Phyllis Pellman Good and Kate Good, (Good Books, 1999). It was originally shared by Karla Good from Harrisonburg. I also have a few recipes in that book.


Get your hands on some rhubarb either from your local farmer’s market or your own patch and get cooking!

And I’m curious, did you like rhubarb growing up? Do you like it now?

Rhubarb Crunch

1 cup flour
¾ cut quick dry oatmeal
1 cup brown sugar, packed
½ cup butter, melted
1 tsp cinnamon
2/3 – 1 cup sugar, depending upon your taste for tart rhubarb
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 cup water
2 cups diced rhubarb
(You can add 1 tsp. vanilla, but it is just as good without)

Mix together flour, dry oatmeal, brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon. Set aside.


In saucepan, mix together sugar, cornstarch, water and vanilla. Cook until thickened.

Place half of crumb mixture in an 8 x 8 pan.

Spread rhubarb over crumb mixture.

Pour cooked mixture over rhubarb.


Top with remaining crumbs.


Bake at 450 degrees for 30-35 minutes, or until rhubarb is tender.

P.S. I forgot to photograph my final product, we were in such a hurry to eat it! If you have good recipe and picture of rhubarb something, send it and I’ll share it here!

Local peeps: if you want some fresh rhubarb, let me know and I’ll cut and share some for free. For sure!


From → Family Life, Food, Recipes

  1. Hey Melodie, Yes I liked rhubarb growing up, as my mom always made a few pies too. Several years ago, I started making a strawberry-rhubarb crisp, and my children all love it. One of them will inevitably ask me every year to make it for some event. So I guess it is time to bake it up soon – wish I was a local peep. 🙂

  2. Yes! I wish you were too. Strawberries aren’t far behind. Do you just use a mix of strawberries and rhubarb in your crisp?? I’m curious. Nice to be in touch!

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