Yesterday we were out sweating in the 75* heat and planting a big row of lilac bushes along The Neighbor's house (our son, DIL, and grandangel). Then by evening a big cloud came over, cooled the air WAY down and dropped a half inch of rain and some pea-sized hail. It was fun to watch it bouncing up out of the lawn. S. got an action shot for us.
The days have been quite nice lately and my rhubarb has decided to unfold from it's long winter's nap. It's a ways from picking, but it won't be too long now.
I decided I really needed to move some of my rhubarb to a new location with more sun and less tree roots, so I divided a couple of my plants by splitting them through the crown with a spade, digging deeply to get the roots. I read that you don't want to divide and move rhubarb if it is over 6" tall. Better to wait until fall. Since my plants were just coming up, it was an easy move. (the white stuff is snow)
I grew up on rhubarb. In the North Country it's the always-reliable garden fruit. There are rhubarb plants on old homesteads in the country that are still growing and thriving on neglect. They really do prefer a bucketful or two of composted manure once a year and a good, deep watering, but if that doesn't happen, they remain faithful. These thick, juicy stalks were picked from my folks' rhubarb plants. They live about an hour south of us and their gardens, trees and plants all tend to be a good 2-3 weeks ahead of ours. I picked enough rhubarb to make four pies and at present, we're almost done eating our second. Oh, the taste of spring!
The old family recipe I use is a rhubarb custard pie with a crumb topping. Of all the rhubarb recipes in my stash, this one is our all-time favorite. I'll share it with you.
Rhubarb Custard Pie with Crumb Topping
1unbaked pie crust
4 cups chopped rhubarb
Put rhubarb into crust.
1 1/4 c. sugar
3 T. flour
Pour this custard over rhubarb. Spread evenly.
1/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. flour
1/4 c. margarine or butter
Cut in butter so it resembles small peas. Sprinkle over top of pie spreading it evenly to the edges.
Bake in a 350* oven for 1-1/2 hours. Pie will be dark golden in color and have a dry crumbly top.
Cool and serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream and coffee.
Look what's blooming in my backyard! The tulips are making fat buds while the daffodils are blossoming up a storm.... literally. Today it's been storming or squalling on and off and at one point, we had an all-out-blizzard and just now we're dealing with high winds and occasional snow flurries. Such is May in the North Country....just wait a few minutes, and the weather will change. Do you spy a friendly visitor? The Rose-breasted Grosbeak is here.