Rhubarb and Memories

A brief granddaughters tale

Before I relocated to the Upper Valley, I lived in North Haven, Connecticut. My parents’ ranch style home was directly next to my grandfather’s house. It was common to spend loving fall afternoons tramping through the woods alongside my grandfather. Although fall remains my favorite season, my fondest memory of my grandfather is picking his spring harvest of rhubarb. Picking stalks straight from the plant, than taking enormous bites into the bitter flavor.

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Rhubarb is an early spring crop that is used for numerous treats such as pies, sauces, and tarts. It can be picked in June. As a child, I preferred it raw. My tastes changed a little as I aged, now my preferred rhubarb consumption is as a sauce similar to apple sauce. Then poured on top of creamy vanilla bean ice cream.

My father was the first to share the secrets to making rhubarb sauce with me.  After we moved to Vermont, I can recall him making it on the stovetop, sharing his own memories of my grandfather’s rhubarb plant.

Try this recipe at home:

Rhubarb Sauce




Wash and chop rhubarb to fill two cups. Mix with sugar and water in a medium pot. Allow to boil, then taking off the heat to allow to simmer. Allow simmering to occur for 10-20 minutes or till rhubarb is stringy.

Once it is taken off the heat, allow to cool. Then eat it straight or as a topping for vanilla bean ice cream!


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