The rhubarb in my garden is nearly ready – but still a little immature for one of my favorite desserts: Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp. Luckily, I had some rhubarb frozen from last year. I’ve used up most of the frozen rhubarb, but about January – when spring seems so long to come, rhubarb becomes ever so precious and I just can’t bear to use up the last bag. But of course now, I’ve saved it too long…as I’m only a week or so away from fresh stalks of ruby red rhubarb. So The Recipe ReDux challenge for “First Shoots of Spring” is the perfect ‘special occasion’ to use up the last bag of frozen rhubarb.
My version of Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp is also gluten-free (Ina’s version on which this recipe is very loosely based is not!). We’re having friends for dinner and their little girl has celiac disease. Since our dinner invitation was upon short notice, I looked everywhere for a crisp recipe that included ingredients I already had in my kitchen. I couldn’t find one. So I developed this one with ingredients you probably already have in the pantry – possibly barring arrowroot starch which I did have in my cupboard. I used stone-ground cornmeal from the Graue Mill near my house. The grist mill uses their grinding stone for corn only, so I know it’s gluten-free. And wow, did it ever provide some nice earthy crunch along with the oatmeal; honestly, I may start making all my crisps with this topping – who needs flour?