30 Things To Make With Rhubarb

30 Things to Make With Rhubarb

For many of us, spring has thoroughly lept out of it’s winter hiding spot with a loud bang. As I sit here, my nose is red and sore from the day spent out on the allotment in the sun. As the weather has been simply beautiful the last few days, more and more people are venturing back onto the allotments, or out into the garden and one of the biggest food related questions on my time lines at the moment is this: Aside from crumble what can I make with rhubarb?. 30 Things to Make With Rhubarb

I spent a bit of time perusing the wonderful world of Pinterest, and came up with these 30 recipes, giving everyone at least something you should have the skill, ability or taste buds for.

Rhubarb Desserts

Crisps and Crumbles

Frozen Rhubarb

Rhubarb Sweets

Rhubarb Drinks

Preserved Rhubarb




Essentials For The Perfect Barbeque

Summer has now been upon us for several weeks, and so at any given weekend we might decide to invite a few like-minded friends over to cook meat (or vegetables) out in the open air. But this pastime is one that requires a little finesse; the difference between a good barbeque and a great one lies both with getting the fundamentals right, and with adding those little touches that make all the difference.

In this article, we’ll take a look at exactly what’s needed to create a great barbeque. We’ll begin with the basics, and get progressively more advanced. With any luck, by the end you should find yourself with a perfect barbeque!flames-1526860_640 (2)

What different sorts of barbeque are there?

Traditionally, a barbeque is something quite unlike what Brits might recognise. In the American Deep South, where this practice took its roots in the 19th century, barbequing is done using indirect heat. A whole pig is placed in a sealed chamber, while a fire is lit in another. Smoke flows along a pipe which connects the two, and eventually out of a chimney. The result is succulent, slow-cooked pork which is infused with that distinctive, smoky flavour. Since pigs were wild animals and difficult to catch, eating them was a rarity – and a cause for celebration. Thus, communities would gather around the barbeque smoker, and eat the roast all afternoon.

In Britain, we have quite a different approach to the barbeque, which draws medium-high heat directly from hot coals. Barbeque grills are available in several different varieties. There are gas-powered ones, which heat your food using the same sorts of principles that the grill atop the stove in your kitchen might; there are coal-powered ones, which consist of little more than a bucket of metal with a griddle atop, which can be filled with charcoal. Simply light them up, and you’ve created a rudimentary oven grill. At the bottom end of the market are disposable barbeque trays, which come in a flimsy foil wrapping, and are designed to be dispensed with after they’ve been exhausted.

How do I prepare a charcoal barbeque?

If you’re going to be lighting charcoal, then you’ll need a means of doing so. Firelighters catch easily and will burn hot enough that the surrounding coals do, too. The same effect can be achieved with tiny bits of kindling wood, or with shredded paper. Some bags of coal are designed to be used whole – simply light up the bag and the whole thing will go up.

Now, after you’ve done this, the coals will burn ferociously – so hot that anything you place on there will be cooked thoroughly on the outside before the inside has gotten going. Now, this might be exactly what you want – if you’re going to be cooking something unusual, like black-and-blue steak, then a rare (or indeed, raw) interior with a blackened exterior might be desirable. For most purposes, however, you’ll want to wait until the temperature has come down.

As a rule of thumb, the coals should be entirely white before you begin cooking. If you’re going to be cooking white meat like pork and chicken, this is particularly important for food safety reasons.meat-1440105_640 (1)


As any chef will tell you, it’s impossible to create a great meal using inferior ingredients. And the same principle holds true when you’re barbequing. Cover the grill in cheap, frozen burgers, and you’ll find that they shrink to the size of ten-pence pieces as soon as they’re exposed to heat, and the water evaporates from them. So what should we look for when shopping for ingredients?

What to cook?

A great burger is one that’s made from great meat. You can get this from your butcher and make your own; with the help of some salt, pepper, egg and breadcrumbs, you can create a burger mix that’ll adhere nicely on the grill, and taste brilliant. Supermarkets now carry all manner of exotic burgers, too – so be sure to look for the premium Wagyu and Kobi meats, which now enjoy unprecedented prominence on supermarket shelves.

Of course, no burger would be up to much unless paired with an accordingly high-quality bun. Be sure to lightly toast your bun on the grill before putting the burger together – this will give it that much-required crunch. Cheese, too, is a necessity – lay a slice of it atop your burger just before you take it off the grill – it should melt slightly into the burger, ensuring a nice gooey texture when it reaches your mouth. You might also want to introduce a sprinkling of fried onion – if your barbeque doesn’t come equipped with a hotplate, then you can bring out a miniature frying pan especially for the job. A crisp lettuce leaf, a slice of tomato, a gherkin, and lashings of your sauce of choice, and you’ll be well on your way to burger heaven.

Naturally, a good barbeque should have more than one food option. Prawn skewers, chicken wings, and vegetarian-friendly halloumi slices can all fit nicely into your selection. Set up a miniature salad bar to one side, and your guests will be able to combine their plateful of delicious grilled meat with generous helpings of crisp salad and pasta.

You’ll also want to provide your guests with something to drink. It’s difficult to go wrong with a large bowl of punch. Prepare it according to a favourite recipe, and then top it up with whatever fruits and spirits you happen to have lying around the kitchen. Not only is such a thing delicious – but it forms an excellent visual centrepiece, too.

As well as the items we’ve thus far discussed, there are a few others which make life that little bit more convenient. Having a spray-bottle filled with water handy can prove an invaluable tool in smothering those bursts of flame that result from fat dripping from the grill. Similarly, you’ll need a few tools for handling the grill – a set of tongs and a spatula being among the more essential!

4 Minute No Bake Lemon/Lime Fridge Cake Recipe

4 minute, no bake, creamy lemon/lime fridge cake

Inspired by a recipe in the Thermomix® Owners UK group on Facebook, and blending the idea with one of my favourite deserts, South African Peppermint Crisp Pie, I came up with this idea for a citrus-summer desert that can be made ahead of time – the day before is ideal, but you could technically eat it straight out the bowl too.

If you eat it immediately it’ll be lighter, but the next day it’s more of a creamy ‘set’ desert. It’s fantastic, quite frankly.

In this recipe I’ve used lime juice, which is what I have, but you could use lemon too. In the South African version there’s also a ridiculous amount of chocolate added, but really this recipe doesn’t need it.

For biscuits I’ve used NICE biscuits, but really, any kind of digestive, shortcake or butter biscuits will do. NICE biscuits are a bit coconutty though, which adds a nice flavour.

I don’t think there’s a ‘wrong’ way to do this desert. Add more condensed milk if you want it sweeter, add more lemon or lime juice if you want it more tart. Either way, it’s delicious, it’s light, it’s summery, and it is oh.so.simple. I’ve whipped the cream in my Thermomix®, but of course,  you can whip it any way you like.

4 Minute No Bake Lemon/Lime Fridge Cake Recipe
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Light, summery, and superbly easy, this no bake fridge cake won't add to the summer heat but will bowl you over with it's simplicity.
Recipe type: Desert, Pudding, Sweet
Serves: 9
  • 500g of double cream (you can use whipping, but adapt the whipping time!)
  • 120g condensed milk
  • 80g lime juice
  • 1 packet of biscuits
  1. In a bowl, lay a layer of biscuits side by side, loosely covering the surface.
  2. In a food processor, whip the cream until it stands at stiff peaks (Thermomix®: about 40 seconds/speed 4 with a butterfly whisk) Don't over-whip
  3. Add the condensed milk and lime (or lemon) juice, whisk briefly to mix. Again, don't over whip
  4. Scoop half the cream mixture on top of the biscuits
  5. Lay another layer of biscuits on the cream mixture
  6. Top off with the rest of the cream.
  7. Spread the mixture so that it is flat, then cover and refrigerate.
  8. The longer you can leave it the better. I like to make it a day in advance, but a couple of hours is sufficient
  9. Decorate with fruit

I hope you love this recipe!


Stained Glass Window Jelly

Stained Glass Window

It was my daughter’s second birthday today, and following on from a month of absolutely no food-mojo, I didn’t prepare anything healthy for this party at all. There were fruit cups, but they were slathered in cream. Yum, but not healthy, really. Anyway, it’s a party, I’m not going to beat myself up about it. Especially when what I did make was as playful and tasty and fun as Stained Glass Rainbow Jelly.

Stained Glass Jelly

I can’t take credit for this recipe – I originally found it at Food Librarian – and considering that I haven’t had any success at all with make from scratch gelatin recipes in the past, I was dubious, but it looked perfect for a Messy Play Party, so I had to try.

Here are a few tips you don’t have to learn for yourself:

  • With the coloured jelly, you can cut them into shapes if you’ve made them into thin enough layers. I made some flowers, and it worked well. I threw the ‘unused’ bits of the jelly into the mix anyway, since the shapes are all haphazard, it doesn’t matter.
  • When you layer them, however, don’t layer the shapes – i.e. the flowers – horizontally, as when you cut it, you cant see the shapes. You need to place the shapes in your dish vertically so you can see them when they are cut.
  • If you make these two days ahead, and store in a sealed container, they are still good. I was worried making them on Saturday that by Monday they would be rubbery, but they were delicious. It takes pressure off doing them the day before and being worried they won’t set in time.

Stained Glass Jelly

We use Farmlea condensed milk so as to avoid feeding the Nestle machine.

For this recipe I used Dr Oetker Gelatin – first time I’ve used it, and my first success. Coincidence? 😉

Want something a little healthier, highly nutritious, but tasty and no-bake? Click here for ‘Chocolate Bliss Balls’!

Stained Glass Window Jelly
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A fun party food, easy to make, but with great impact. Everyone loves them!
Recipe type: Sweet, Desert
Serves: 40
  • 4 packets jelly
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 2 packets gelatin
  1. In four separate shallow containers, make the four jellies. IGNORE THE PACKAGE INSTRUCTIONS. Just mix each packet with one cup of boiling water. Once the jelly is dissolved, pop it in the fridge for at least four hours.
  2. Once the jelly is set, gently remove it from the shallow containers, and cut into squares or shapes.
  3. Next, pour ½ cup of cold water into a bowl.
  4. Add the two packets of gelatin and leave it to 'bloom' (absorb the water and swell up).
  5. Add 1.5 cups boiling water, mixing till the gelatin is dissolved.
  6. Add the can of condensed milk, mix it all together.
  7. Leave the condensed milk mix to cool a bit. If you pop the jelly in straight away, it my melt.
  8. Once it's cooled down (about 10 minutes) add the jelly squares and return it all to the freezer.
  9. Leave for 4 - 6 hours, or over night. Loosen the sides with a butter knife, and tip out.
  10. Cut into squares or shapes.

4 Fabulous ChillFactor Squeeze Cup Slushy Maker Recipes

CaptureSummer is coming, and I for one am looking forward to afternoons spent in the garden with my girls, enjoying the sunshine.

My girls love ice creams and ice lollies, and I generally choose to make my own yoghurt based or simple water based juices for them. We recently received a ChillFactor Squeeze Cup Slushy Maker for review, and I was very excited to try it, so popped it in the freezer immediately, eager to try it out.

The  ChillFactor Squeeze Cup Slushy Maker comes as a cup with the magic freezing bit inside, a leak-proof seal, lid, and a spoon-slash-straw. The way it works is fabulous for children. Total ‘magic’.

You need to pop the slushie maker into the freezer for four to six hours before use, so ours actually just lives in our freezer, rather than a drawer. That way whenever we want to make a quick frozen treat, it’s ready to go.

 ChillFactor Squeeze Cup Slushy Maker I particularly love the fact that I know exactly what goes in to these Slushy treats.There’s no colouring, sugar or preservatives unless I add them myself. It’ so easy to do, literally, even a child can do it. Here are some of  our favourite snacks to make in the Slushy maker:

Vanilla Ice

  • 200ml whole milk
  • 1tbs vanilla essence

Pour into the Slushy maker, squeeze for about 2 minutes, enjoy.

Chocolate Milk Slushy 

This is so incredibly good, it rivals and beats another brand of chocolate milk hands down. While doing it this way didn’t actually make a Slushy, it did make a beautifully thick chocolate milkshake. So delicious! (Apparently when they have ‘bits’ in them, the liquid doesn’t make a proper slushy.)

  • 3 tbs hot chocolate powder
  • 3 tbs boiling water
  • 200ml whole milk

Boil the water and add it to the hot chocolate. Stir to make a paste. Add the milk and stir it into the paste.  Pour it into the Slushy maker and squeeze, squeeze, squeeze. Use your straw to drink this one if it doesn’t freeze up entirely. Delicious.

Cola Slushy 

It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like… a cola slushy. Not a healthy treat, and more one for me than the kids, but yummy anyway.

  • 200ml coke

Pour. Squeeze. Eat/Drink. Yum.

Fruit Juice

If you use a juice with ‘bits’ in it, it doesn’t slush properly. Choose a smooth juice. Make as above.

It’s that easy.

The only thing I don’t like is that there’s no real immediate reuse option – you have to refreeze after every use – and I would love if they made a family sized version, so I could do more than single person portions. I’ll definitely have to get a second one for my other daughter soon too.

They’re around £15.99 each, which is a lot, but if you think what it can save you in ice cream van purchases, dental treatments down the line and general sugar intake… it’s a bargain!

{Festival Of Food} Kale & Parmesan Summer Salad

I’ve put loads of effort into my garden this year, and to be honest, thus far, it hasn’t really paid off! I’m hoping now that summer’s finally arrived, we may have better luck. It certainly can’t get much worse. kale and parmesan salad

That said, the one thing in my garden that’s been glorious, and a steady producer, has been the Kale plant.

I do like Kale, but planted this specially for Kale chips, and maybe some smoothies. I find Kale generally rubbery and tough, and eat it because it’s good for me. Unfortunately I don’t know what variety of Kale I planted, but the leaves are smaller than the ones in the shop, and much more tender, making a delicious raw salad.

{Festival Of Food} Kale & Parmesan Summer Salad
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A lovely, light, spring time salad, perfect with baby kale, soft, tender and juicy. There's no science to the quantities here - just use what you have. Three cups of kale pretty much loosely fills the TM31 bowl.
Recipe type: Side Dish, Salad
Cuisine: Healthy, Salad, Summer
Serves: 3
  • (60g) 5 Tablespoons Olive Oil, Divided
  • (15g) 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 3 cups (750ml) Stemmed And Sliced Kale
  • (60g) ⅓ cup (80ml) Grated Parmesan Cheese
  1. Whisk together the lemon juice and olive oil until well blended.
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In a large bowl, toss together the kale, dressing, and Parmesan cheese.
  4. Enjoy!



Please take a moment to visit the blogs of our other Festival of Food participants. The links in this list will be live by the end of the day, as participants are all in different time zones.

Stay connected! Be sure to “Like” the Festival of Food Carnival Facebook page.


A Very Thermie Christmas This recipe features in A Very Thermie Christmas, where you can find it and 50 other recipes perfect for a Thermomix® assisted Christmas. Read more about it here.

{Slightly} Healthier Ice Cream With Rapadura

Ice cream, lovely as it is, is not exactly good for you. It’s sugary, fatty, and well, yum.

Rapadura Ice Cream

But, it’s summer, and when my children want ice cream, I’d rather give them something full of vitamin C, iron and B Vitamins: enter Rapadura Ice Cream. Now, sometimes I’ll have a nice, healthy yoghurt ice cream on hand, which is by far my preference for the children, but everyone cheats some times.

The rapadura gives this ice cream a really rich, caramel flavour, which I find delicious.

I use my Thermomix® to mix this up, but you can use any blender or food processor. It’s also preferable to use an ice cream maker, and if you don’t have one – I don’t – use a steel container. I don’t have one of those easier, so I just use any old bowl, and it works a charm.


{Slightly} Healthier Ice Cream With Rapadura
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
I make ice cream in the Thermomix®. If you have an ice cream maker, you can use the same ingredients but follow manufacturer instructions. If you have neither, use a regular blender for this recipe.
Recipe type: Ice Cream
Cuisine: Sweets
Serves: 10
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 250g cream
  • 250g milk
  • 150g Rapadura Organic Whole Cane Sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • pinch salt
  1. Place all the ingredients into the Thermomix® bowl and cook for 5 minutes and 80C on speed 4.
  2. Pour into a freezer bowl, and place into the freezer for 3-4 hours until firm.
  3. Mix it all up again, and return to freezer. Repeat every couple of hours until it is the right consistency, then serve.
  4. If you're saving it for another day, remove from freezer about 15 minutes before you want to serve.


Festival of Food: Mint Cordial Recipe

Mint cordial What’s lovelier on a hot summers day than a refreshing mint cordial? Well, I don’t know, but a mint cordial definitely hits the spot. Mint is used to relieve normal pregnancy nausea, and abdominal pain. Chewing mint leaves will make your teeth whiter over the course of a couple of weeks, and eliminate toxins from the body. Some even claim mint can cure asthma, although I’ve not seen any research on that.

  • This easy recipe will make enough cordial for 3 – 5 litres of mint juice, depending on how strong you like it.
  • Welcome to the Festival of Food Carnival. This month, we celebrate Smoothies and Mocktails!  Hosted by Diary of a First Child and Hybrid Rasta Mama, you’re welcome to join us next time, or if you have a previously published recipe you’d like to share, add it to the linky below.



Festival of Food: Mint Cordial Recipe
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A gorgeous summery mint infusion
Recipe type: Drink
Cuisine: Summer
  • 2 cups fresh mint leaves
  • 500g sugar or rapadura
  • 2 cups water
  1. Lightly crush the mint leaves to release some of the flavours.
  2. Add sugar and water to a heavy bottomed pot and then add mint.
  3. Bring the mixture to boil for five minutes, then simmer lightly for 15 minutes.
  4. Cover and leave as is overnight
  5. Strain the mixture to remove all the leaves, then decant into a bottle and refrigerate.
  6. You can keep this in the fridge for 2 - 3 weeks.
  7. Just add to still or sparkling water to taste.
  8. Enjoy the refreshing yumminess.

Reprinted from Diary of a First Child


Please take a moment to visit the blogs of our other Festival of Food participants. The links in this list will be live by the end of the day, as participants are all in different time zones.

Stay connected! Be sure to “Like” the Festival of Food Carnival Facebook page.