Rhubarb Strawberry Compote
with Honey and Dates
By Ann M. Evans
Spring is rhubarb and strawberry season and, of course, bee swarming season. The markets are overflowing with both. The honey adds a fruity rich flavor and sweetness to the rhubarb, without overpowering its innate tart taste. The dates, which technically make this a three-fruit dish, add another layer of sweetness, and create a little surprise of almost caramel-like flesh. When I make this for my mom, she says it reminds her of the way her mother, who came from England, made it. I use my own bees’ honey in this, which in the spring is almost all orange blossom. Wildflower or clover honey would be fine as well.
- ¾ cup water
- 2 pounds rhubarb, washed and chopped roughly into 1-inch pieces
- 1 pint strawberries, washed and stemmed, cut in half
- 1/2 cup wildflower or other floral raw, unheated honey
- 10 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
Bring the water to boil in a medium size non-reactive saucepan with lid over high heat. When it boils, reduce heat to low and add the rhubarb and strawberries. Cover. Simmer until rhubarb is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir with a wooden spoon to break up any clumps of rhubarb. Add the honey and dates. Reduce heat to simmer and cook until almost all the water is absorbed, about another 15 minutes. Stir occasionally to avoid burning.
Serve warm or cold. For desert, serve plain in a glass, footed compote dish, over ice cream or, for breakfast, over oatmeal.
Makes about 8 – ½ cup servings