Red Wine-Poached Rhubarb
Four to six servings
Adapted from a recipe by Susan Herrmann Loomis.Breaking with those who know more than I do, I use a downscale red wine when poaching fruit. The bottle I chose cost whopping 2.30€, and was on promotion, so I got an additional 20% off. But feel free to use any fruity red that suits your fancy.
2 cups (500ml) red wine
1/2 cup (100g) sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 small cinnamon stick
2 whole cloves
2-4 allspice berries
1 pound (450g) rhubarb, trimmed and rinsed
1. In a wide, non-reactive saucepan, heat the wine, sugar, honey, and spices.
2. Cut the rhubarb into pieces, roughly the size of carrot sticks.
3. Once the wine is almost boiling, poach the rhubarb in two batches, standing vigilant with a slotted spoon. When just tender, remove the rhubarb and put it in a bowl and poach the remaining rhubarb.
Depending on the rhubarb, each batch will take 1 to 3 minutes to poach.
4. Reduce the poaching liquid over moderate heat until you have about 3/4 cup (185ml). Pour over the rhubarb pieces and let stand for a few minutes before serving.

Serve warm with a scoop of cool ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Storage: The compote can be made up to a day in advance. Keep in the bowl, covered at room temperature, until ready to serve. Rewarm before serving or serve at room temperature.

Variation: Once cool, add a basket of raspberries or blackberries, or sliced strawberries. Or cook the rhubarb with fresh cherries, pitted and cut in half.