by James Martin

James Martin’s classic rhubarb crumble recipe will take you to comfort food heaven in six short steps and under an hour.

Each serving provides 630 kcal, 6g protein, 97g carbohydrates (of which 59g sugars), 23g fat (of which 14.5g saturates), 4g fibre and 0.5g salt.


Buyer's guide

Forced rhubarb is sold from January until March, when outdoor-grown rhubarb takes over. The latter can become coarse in late summer. Choose pert looking stems and avoid any limp or slimy-looking stems.


Slice, wrap and refrigerate, if possible. Cooked rhubarb freezes well.


Wash and trim the rhubarb stems before use. Discard the leaves as they are poisonous. If using outdoor-grown rhubarb, remove any stringy outer layers. Cut into equal-sized pieces to ensure even cooking.

Forced rhubarb is very fragile so poach or bake only briefly to prevent it from disintegrating into a mush. Use a thick sugar syrup as it releases a lot of juice. Outdoor-grown rhubarb has a sharper taste and more fibrous texture, so requires a slightly longer cooking. Both varieties of rhubarb are good in pies, tarts, fools, jellies and ices. Rhubarb also makes a good jam with grapefruit or ginger, and tastes delicious made into a cordial flavoured with rosewater. Orange, vanilla and lavender all complement rhubarb.