• Sumo

This is lovely made with half wholemeal and half white self raising flour, it makes it a little more healthy, you can also add chopped hazelnuts to the topping if you wish

Rhubarb is the only vegetable we eat as a fruit.  A fruit contains the seeds of the plant, so peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes and aubergines are all fruit we eat as vegetables; if we eat the leaves, roots or stalk of the plant these are classed as vegetables.  We eat the stalk of the rhubarb plant so it’s a vegetable.

Ingredients: for 12 muffins

225g self raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons ground ginger

100g soft dark brown sugar

75g butter, melted

1 egg

2 tablespoons black treacle or molasses

175ml milk

200g rhubarb, cut into 1cm chunks

Topping:

50g demerara sugar

25g soft butter

50g chopped roasted hazelnuts*

How to make Rhubarb Muffins… WASH YOUR HANDS

  1. Ask an adult to turn the oven onto 200oc/400oF/Gas Mark 6 and put a shelf onto the centre runner (Aga Roasting oven – shelf on oven floor).
  2. Mix together all the ingredients for the muffin mix except the rhubarb and beat until most of the lumps have gone.
  3. Add the rhubarb and stir gently to mix.  Fill the muffin cases evenly with the mixture.
  4. Mix together the sugar, soft butter and hazelnuts for the topping and place heaped teaspoonfuls on top of the muffins.
  5. Ask an adult to put the bun tray into the centre of the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and firm to the touch. Ask an adult to take the muffins out of the oven and leave to cool or eat warm.

*Not suitable for people with nut allergies or children under 5 years old, omit.

  • Sumo

We had a franchise discovery day yesterday during which we had the potential franchisees making rhubarb muffins to eat later.  I’d run out of light brown soft sugar so substituted it for dark brown soft sugar, well, it was so good I started wondering what the rhubarb muffins would be like if we made the mixture a bit more like gingerbread as ginger and rhubarb go so well together.  Result – yummy.

Is rhubarb a fruit or a vegetable? It’s a vegetable as it’s the stalk of the plan that we eat and it’s the only vegetable that we eat as a fruit.  We eat lots of fruit as vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, aubergines, courgettes but not the other way round.  The difference between a fruit and a vegetable?  A fruit contains the seeds of the plant, a vegetable is the root (potatoes, onions, parsnips, carrots), the stalk (rhubarb, celery) or the leaves (cabbage, lettuce, kale), cauliflower is guess what?  Yep, a flower so is broccoli.

At this time of year rhubarb is ‘forced’ meaning that it is grown in the dark and as it pushes through the earth it expects to find sunlight, but as it’s dark it keeps pushing itself upwards desperate to find the light, it is said that if you listen in complete silence you can hear it screaming to find the light.  The stalk is deep pink and the leaves mustard, it tastes much sweeter than outdoor rhubarb and is delicious eaten raw, dunked into soft brown sugar.

I remember being very little and my Aunty Elsie and Uncle Stan grew rhubarb in their garden, my Uncle Stan always told me that the leaves were poisonous.  I was terrified, I thought that if I even touched the leaves I’d die and saw their garden as this extremely dangerous and scary place.  Probably my Uncle Stan’s plan to keep me off his vegetable patch, well it worked.  Actually, the leaves are poisonous, but you need to eat around 2kg of them to do you any harm and they are extremely bitter so it’s highly unlikely that you’d would ever eat that much.

So if you like gingerbread and you like rhubarb then my gingerbread rhubarb muffins will be right up your street.