The spring started out with cool weather, but has improved over the last few days. I am always amazed at how the leaves on the trees seem to bloom from small buds and take on a beautiful chartreuse color. The chartreuse color seems to last a few days and then by some stroke of magic the leaves change color, taking on the full leaf green hue.
Rhubarb thrives on cool spring weather, and the first stalks have that rosy hue adding great color to crisps , pies and muffins.
A few years ago the CBC ran a contest asking listeners to submit recipes for rhubarb. It seems that everyone who grows rhubarb is overwhelmed at how prolific the plants can be. There seems to be no limitation on the culinary possibilities. The "fruit" can be used in baking rhubarb muffins, pies and even cooking it into rhubard-ade.
This recipe makes a great sweet, tart tasting muffins.
Rhubarb Pecan Muffins
Makes 12 muffins
2 cups unbleached flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup chopped pecans
1 large egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp grated orange peel
3/4 cup orange juice
1 1/4 cups finely chopped fresh rhubarb
Stir the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda together.
In another bowl, mix the egg, oil, orange peel and orange juice . Add this to the flour mixture and stir just until moist. Stir in the chopped pecans and rhubarb. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 25-30 minutes.