Monday, February 01, 2010

Rhubarb and Kings Ginger Fool

Found this recipe in the Independent last weekend when we'd taken ourselves out to The Bear for Sunday lunch and a peruse of the pile of papers that are always available. I'm taken with the notion of a fool as a name for dessert. A while ago I read about them in an article extolling their simplicity and lushness but it was not till now that I actually got around to understanding what they are and getting together the very simple ingredients needed to make one. A precursor of trifle, they are in essence a means of showcasing fruit, and rhubarb (though a vegetable) is one of my favourite things in the world.

The clincher for me actually making this one though was the use of The King's Ginger. It sounded so delightfully exotic and turns out to be a preparation made by Berry Bros and Rudd for King Edward VII when, at the request of the King's doctor, it was produced as a warming drink for His Majesty to take after winter morning rides in his new horseless carriage. Made to Berrys' own recipe, The King's Ginger Liqueur is an ideal winter drink, and the label promises it is most suitable for bon viveurs and high spirited ladies. How could I resist?

Rhubarb & Kings Ginger Fool

For the rhubarb compote
300g rhubarb, trimmed, washed and chopped into rough 1cm chunks
100g caster sugar

For the fool
100-120ml Kings Ginger Liqueur
The juice of half a lemon
50g caster sugar
300ml double cream

First, make the rhubarb compote. Put the rhubarb and sugar in a heavy-based saucepan and cook on a low heat for 4-5 minutes, stirring every so often until the rhubarb is tender. Remove from the heat and leave to cool, then refrigerate for an hour.

For the fool, mix the lemon juice and sugar together. Then add the cream and whip the mixture slowly with an electric whisk or by hand until thick; then add the Kings Ginger and continue mixing until it thickens again. Then taste and add a little more of the liqueur if you wish.

Carefully fold half of the compote into the cream mixture and spoon into individual glasses or a serving dish and chill for at least an hour.

Serve with the rest of the compote on top of the fool.

Really easy, really fabulous.

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