Thursday, June 19, 2014

Strawberry Rhubarb Parfaits

Tis the season of strawberries and rhubarb! Enjoy it while it lasts. You can get strawberries year round. But they won't hold a candle to what you can find at your local farmers' market right now. And rhubarb is one of those rare veggies (yup, technically a vegetable!) that is hard to find outside of its late spring/early summer season.

We use this unstoppable duo to make a compote. Stirring the chopped strawberries in after cooking down the rhubarb preserves a nice freshness and texture. We pair it here with Greek-style yogurt and a tasty whole grain crumble topping. Try full fat yogurt swirled with a touch of honey, or vanilla ice cream for a more decadent treat. Make a double or triple batch of the compote - its uses are endless!

The crumble topping is similar to what would go on a fruit crisp. Using rolled oats as the base, we add ground flax and sunflower seeds instead of the traditional flour. More nutritious and gluten-free! Grapeseed or canola oil works great instead of melted butter. You could substitute coconut yogurt for the Greek-style and go dairy-free too!

Strawberry Rhubarb Parfaits

For compote
6 oz rhubarb, chopped
3 T sugar
Zest and juice from half a lemon
8 oz strawberries, hulled and chopped

For crumble topping
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
1/4 cup ground raw sunflower seeds (you can grind them in a coffee grinder or with a mortar and pestle)
1/4 cup plus 2 T sugar
1/4 cup grapeseed or canola oil

For assembling
2 cups Greek-style yogurt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Combine rhubarb, sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest in a small pot and cook over medium low heat until rhubarb breaks down and mixture is reduced and thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in chopped strawberries and remove from heat. Let cool.

In a medium bowl, combine oats, ground flaxseed, ground sunflower seeds and sugar and mix well. Stir in oil. Use your fingers to mix ingredients gently to form crumbles. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Bake for about 8 minutes, tossing once halfway through, until lightly browned. Let cool.

To assemble, spoon 1/4 cup of yogurt into 4 small glasses or bowls. Top each with 2 tablespoons cooled compote. Add another 1/4 cup layer of yogurt to each glass, and then another 2 tablespoons of compote to each glass. Top each with 2-3 tablespoons of crumble. Enjoy!

Makes 4 servings

What kids can do (with appropriate tools and adult supervision)
*Snap rhubarb stalks into small pieces
*Hull strawberries (you can frequently get the stem off by gripping it tightly at the base and pulling and twisting at the same time, losing little to no strawberry!)
*Chop strawberries (a wavy chopper or even a butterknife will work well)
*Zest and juice lemon (when zesting, make sure to stop when you see white!)
*Measure and mix crumble topping ingredients
*Assemble parfaits

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