Strawberry-rhubarb crumble with rosewater

Strawberry-rhubarb crumble with rosewater

What can I say? While I was busy making bagels and thinking about finally showing you  these mind-blowing cookies, I had a quick look what’s happening around and… something sneaked up on me: Strawberry-rhubarb crumble. Reading about it here yesterday, I suddenly realized that I could not even remember how long ago we had a crumble (a sad thought when married to a Englishman, let me tell you) and that it was now imperative to make one this instant. Just the idea of it made me run out, jump in the car & race drive to the farm for some super red, ripe, fresh strawberries & rhubarb and while I was there I picked up asparagus, too.

Strawberry-rhubarb crumble

It simply made my Saturday: clothes shopping was a delight (3 pairs of trousers one size smaller, though I should have thought about that before I ate two portions of the crumble later…), planted flowers in pots to pretty-up the place before the parents are arriving, bending a few bagels into shape (coming to this blog soon) & finally lazing on the deck chairs in the fading sun with drink in hand. Feeling good and finishing the day with carpaccio & this pudding was just the icing crumble on the cake.

I love the combination of strawberries & rhubarb: the rhubarb has a tangy sharpness, which is mellowed by the sweet fruitiness of the strawberries, who as a bonus also provide some much needed vibrancy in the colour department. In return, the rhubarb gives the fruit mixture body and prevents it from turning into mush. Normally lemon is used to brighten the sweetness of the strawberries and I have just added the merest of spritzes for old-times-sakes here since the rhubarb is tangy enough. But, here come the trick: add a tiny amount of rosewater to amplify the strawberry taste without even noticing the rosewater itself, though feel free to double the amount for a discernible rose flavour. Re the crumble, I’m happy to stay with my recipe since it works for me, I love it and there is no melting & cooling involved. Also, raw cane sugar: sugar with a hint of golden syrup. Mhmh. Posting now.



Strawberry-rhubarb crumble with rosewater

4-8 portions

300g (10 ½ oz) rhubarb (prepped weight of 4 stalks)
300g (10 ½ oz) strawberries (hulled weight of 1 punnet with extras for the cook)
2 tablespoons raw cane sugar
1 tablespoon flour
a tiny spritz of not even ½ lemon
¼ teaspoon rosewater (use double for a more intense rose taste)

90g (6 ½ tablespoons; 3.2 oz) cold butter, cut into pieces
120g (1 cup) plain flour
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
6 tablespoons raw cane sugar (or vanilla sugar)


Preheat an oven to 190°C or 375°F.
Cut the rhubarb into 2cm or ½ inch pieces and chop the strawberries into halves, quarters or eights depending on the size of your berries (all pieces should be approximately the same size, although I do not mind smaller strawberries). Decant into an ovenproof dish (I used a square one: 18x18x5 cm = 7x7x2 inches) and toss with sugar, flour, lemon juice and rosewater.

For the crumble knead and rub butter, flour mixed with baking powder and sugar together with your hands. If you are planning to use the mixture later, store it in the fridge until needed. Top the fruits with crumble, place the dish onto baking parchment or a sheet (the liquid might bubble over) and bake for 25-35 minutes. Best eaten still warm with vanilla custard (vanilla sauce) or proper vanilla ice-cream.


Erdbeer-Rhabarber Streusel (Crumble) mit Rosenwasser

ergibt 4-8 Portionen

300g Rhabarber (geputzt)
300g Erdbeeren (geputzt)
2 EL roher Rohrzucker
1 EL Mehl
ein Spritzer Zitronensaft von weniger als ½ Zitrone
¼ TL Rosenwasser (doppelte Menge für einen ausgeprägten Rosengeschmack)

90g kalte Butter in Stücken
120g Mehl
eine Messerspitze Backpulver
6 EL roher Rohrzucker (oder Vanillezucker: Zucker mit Vanillestange)
Backofen auf 190°C vorheizen.

Rhabarberstangen in maximal 2cm große Stückchen schneiden, die Erdbeeren je nach Größe halbieren, vierteln oder achteln (die Stücke sollten in etwa die gleiche Größe haben). Alles in eine ofenfeste Form geben (egal ob eckig, oval, rund: meine ist 18x18x5cm) und mit 2 EL Zucker, Zitronensaft, ¼ TL Rosenwasser und 1 EL Mehl mischen.

Für die Streusel (crumble): Butter mit Mehl, Backpulver und dem Zucker mit den Händen reiben und kneten bis crumble = ungleiche Streusel entstehen: eine Mischung aus größeren Klumpen und kleinen Bröseln ist hier ausdrücklich erwünscht. Die Streusel kann man auch vorbereiteten, sie sollten dann aber bis zur Verwendung im Kühlschrank aufbewahrt werden.

Streusel auf die Früchte streuen und die Form auf einem Backblech oder Backpapier in die Ofenmitte schieben. Die Unterlage ist ganz wichtig: der süße Fruchtsaft brodelt gegen Ende gerne über und so erspart man sich das spätere Ofenschrubben. Für 25-35 Minuten backen bis der Saft schön an den Rändern über die goldenen Streusel gelaufen ist. Am besten noch warm mit Vanillesauce oder Vanilleeis essen.

9 thoughts on “Strawberry-rhubarb crumble with rosewater

  1. Yes! It is wonderful. A fabulous idea using rose water. I’ll have to make another one now and try it your way. I agree, the lemon really did bring in a bit too much sour. We still enjoyed, however, not everyone would. I think I’ll go edit the post a little….tone it down. Thank you for the link back and I agree…the vibrant color was much needed.

    • What do you mean, edit & tone it down? No way! Lemon is good. We like the lemon. I added a twist with the rosewater (because I had this connection in my mind) and that just goes a different way. No way, no editing. Yours is nice.

      • Hahaha. Well, I got a little worried because I have had so many comments of folks who are going to make it and the more I thought about it (even before your post) I started thinking about the recipe a little more. And I really do think the juice of one lemon is too much for a crumble. I think 1/2 would be much better. This is such a great way to examine recipes. By talking with others and zero-ing in on the ingredients a little more…coming up with a better tasting version. I love it! 🙂

  2. I’ve never cooked rhubarb before, but Tiny White Cottage tipped me off that you had a version of this with rosewater and I had to stop by! I made this last night, without the rose water and it was absolutely delicious. I’ll have to try it with rosewater. I tried to cut down on the butter, but it really isn’t the same. Beautiful recipe, not too tart and not too sweet.

    • Thank you & Same here, I think it is wonderful either way. Rhubarb crumble on its own is nice but with strawberries – total different thing. Try the rose water and let me know – somehow it intensifies the strawberry taste & fragrance. Butter is a must, though… N. xx

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