Rhubarb looks like red celery and typically used as a fruit but technically is a vegetable. The stalks are edible but the leaves contain oxalic acid and can be toxic so discard the tops.
To peel or not to peel, that is the question. As I was making this, I peeled the rhubarb because of the celery-like strings and for some reason I had it in my head that you were supposed to peel before cooking (where did I come up with that?). As I sat down to write, I decided to do a little internet research with some of my favorite Food Network chefs’ recipes and found that no one says “step 1: peel the rhubarb.” Thanks, Ina (Garten), Anne (Burrell) and Bobby (Flay); wish I had checked BEFORE I made this!
At least I can show you what peeled rhubarb looks like even though you NEVER have to do this step. After NOT peeling your rhubarb, cut into one-inch pieces.
Next cube your bread. I like to use challah which is a traditional Jewish yeast egg bread that I get in my local grocery store; I think it gives a little more texture to the dessert. The BEEFMOM used white sandwich bread, so feel free to experiment with bread types. I removed the bottom crust first but not the top crust.
Pour the melted butter over the bread cubes and stir to coat. Add sugar and mix well. I could just stop right here and eat the whole bowl. Like a butter and sugar sandwich! You had those as a kid, didn’t you?
Fold in the rhubarb.
Spread into a greased baking dish. Add one tablespoon of water into each corner of the pan but do NOT mix in. Bake 45 minutes until golden and gooey and delicious looking!
YUM... add a little scoop of vanilla ice cream and prepare to be amazed!
6 cups bread cubes, crusts removed (or not removed, your choice)
2/3 cup butter, melted
2 cups sugar
4 cups rhubarb, cut into one-inch pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat bread cubes with butter; add sugar and mix well until bread is well coated. Fold in rhubarb. Pour mixture into greased 13x9 baking dish. Put one tablespoon water in each of the four corners of the pan but do not mix in. Bake 45 minutes, covering during last 10 minutes if top is getting too brown.
Alternate: I was going to make this one time in the fall and couldn’t find rhubarb (fresh or frozen) in my store so I made with blueberries instead. I cut the sugar almost in half and it turned out lovely so feel free to try with other fruits adjusting the sugar to which produce you use and to your taste.
Leslie (aka the BEEFWIFE)