Saturday, May 01, 2010


We pulled some rhubarb this week, and just in time, too. It was starting to bolt. Some of the stalks had grown more than three-feet tall with leaves the size of elephant ears.

I have many memories of rhubarb as we had a big patch on the home farm. When the rhubarb was ready we knew that spring had surely arrived with no turning back. No winter relapses.

My mother made rhubarb sauce—sour and unappealing. But my dad assured us we must eat it as it “purified the blood” after a long dreary winter. So we did, but not without complaint.

Ruth made rhubarb crisp. Not even a distant relative of rhubarb sauce for rhubarb crisp is tangy--sweet, providing our first taste of spring.

Rhubarb Crisp

4 cups rhubarb, chopped
1 cup flour
¾ cup oatmeal
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix together the flour, oatmeal, brown sugar and cinnamon.
Add butter or margarine to the flour mixture until crumbly.
Press about half of flour mixture into a 9 x 13 greased pan.
Combine sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Add water and vanilla. Cook this sugar water mixture over medium heat until clear, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
Add rhubarb to the sugar-water mixture coating the rhubarb.
Pour rhubarb over crust. Place remaining flour crumbs on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.



August 8-14. My week-long writing workshop at The Clearing in Door County. “Writing From Your Life.” And a day-long workshop on Saturday, October 30.

The Clearing Folk School
P.O. Box 65 | 12171 Garrett Bay Road | Ellison Bay, Wisconsin 54210 Toll Free: 877.854.3225 | Monday - Friday 8-4


May 3, 3:00-7:00 p.m. Local History Expo, Sheboygan County Area Historical Community, Range Line Inn, 170 Range Line Road, Kohler. (6:00 p.m. presentation, Old Farm a History.)

May 16, 1:00 p.m. Glenwood City Historical Society, Holy Cross Lutheran Church, 615 Maple Street, Glenwood City. Call 715-796-560 for further details. (Old Farm: A History)

May 20, 11:00 a.m., Southern Lakes Retired Teachers, 616 Droster Avenue, Burlington. (One-Room Schools)

June 8, 7:00 p.m. Launch for Horse Drawn Days, Barnes and Noble West Madison.

June 9, 10:30 a.m. College Days, UW-Madison campus. Ames County Series.

June 12, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Horse Drawn Days at Stonefield Village, Cassville, WI. Discussion of book and demonstrations of horse drawn equipment.

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