Celebrate Summer!

In theory, the Summer Solstice is my least favourite day of the year since from then on, the days only get shorter!  But it’s hard to resist the puffy clouds against the bright blue, the burgeoning green of the fields, the gentle breezes drying the sweat from your brow … and the promise of produce!! green-onions-1.jpgFrom our organic farm, we’ve had green garlic, the above onions, microgreens, head lettuce and are waiting (only drooling a little) for strawberries next week.  One of the first fruits of the new season, though, is rhubarb – a wonderful way to shock your taste buds out of the winter tedium.  There’s quite a large patch on the property and for weeks, Father Greg has been faithfully bringing the kitchen some stalks on his way in to work.  We stew it, freeze it, make it into crisps, pies, cakes AND these wonderful bars.

RHUBARB OAT BARS

Yield: One 9 inch x 9 inch pan gives 16 pieces

Mix together in a saucepan…

2 c rhubarb, sliced finely

½ c sugar

2 T cornstarch

¼ c apple cider (or water)

1 T each of lemon juice and vanilla

zest of one orange

2 T diced candied ginger

Bring to a simmer, then let cool.

In a large bowl, stir together

1 c flour

1 ½ t baking powder

1 c brown sugar

1 ½ c oats

1 t each of nutmeg, ginger, ground coriander or to taste

½ t salt

Add and work in with hands until just crumbly (do not overwork) …

1 cup soft butter

Pat half the oat mixture into greased 9” square pan. Pour the rhubarb mixture over this and sprinkle the remaining oat mix over all.  Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until golden.  Cool completely before cutting.

rhubarb oat bars

It’s a tasty treat and will give you strength for more weeding!

Take care of yourselves, and each other ❤

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May Musings.

easter table2

Easter Brunch has come and gone.  We served 200 people and had just a great time!  There was a special encore appearance by Ryan – who came up from London to lend a hand … thanks, buddy!  You make service fun and easy.

Book your tickets early for next year!  We can’t accommodate many more … unless we build an addition (and add a couple of ovens!).  There’s something for every taste.muffin eggs 2Well, maybe not the above … if I tried to get my staff to make (the dis-respectfully-named)  “muffin eggs” for 200 people, I am sure I would face insurrection!

An easier recipe follows.  It was passed on to the kitchen by our Executive Director and we’ve been using it without a change.  Occasionally I will add a handful of slivered almonds for texture but it is a wonderful treat just as it is.

Father Roger’s Rice Crispy Squares for Grown-ups.  

Line an 11 x 7 inch pan with parchment paper.

Heat slowly, stirring constantly, in a large pot…

2/3 c honey

2/3 c almond butter

1 t vanilla

1 t cinnamon 

As soon as mixture is warm and well blended, stir in…

6 c whole grain rice crisps (or other cereal).

When well coated, move mixture to pan and gently press it in to all the corners (wet hands help!).  Cool completely before slicing. 

Not ideal for mid summer as it tends to get too soft and fall apart.

I do have to note that we use honey from Tuckamore Bees … who are so local that their bees harvest nectar from our land!

Enjoy the spring!  Stay dry and take care of each other!  ❤