rhubarb dessert


Rhubarb Fool



  • 450g rhubarb
  • 80g sugar, very approximately
  • finely grated zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 1 vanilla pod, split in half down the middle or a few drops of vanilla essence
  • 1 tbsp Pernod (optional)
  • 4 egg whites (optional)
  • 200ml double cream, softly whipped


Put the rhubarb into a saucepan on top of the vanilla pod and add the sugar, orange zest and juice. Put on a low heat for 15-20 minutes, until the rhubarb is quite soft. Taste for sweetness, then remove the vanilla pod and scrape out the seeds into the rhubarb. Pour in the Pernod and blend the puree in a food processor until it is smooth. At this stage my mother whips up 4 egg whites until stiff (they shouldn't move if you turn the bowl upside down) and fold them gently into the rhubarb puree. She then folds in the cream and serves it with some toasted flaked almonds or home-made shortbread. The whites lighten the fool, making it fluffy and airy (producing more of it). I prefer a more intense fool, so I leave the whites out. I sometimes serve it in small glasses with a thin layer of double cream poured on top. You can then add more if you want it. Without the cream you can have the fool as a compote for breakfast with Greek yoghurt and toasted nuts.

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