Roasted rhubarb, orange and crystallised puff pastry

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Graham Hornigold's beautiful rhubarb dessert recipe makes a colourful pudding to usher in the spring, pairing sweet and tart rhubarb with a crisp crystallised puff pastry and glazed orange segments.

First published in 2015




Rhubarb jus

  • 1000g of rhubarb, frozen
  • 1 vanilla pod, seeds removed
  • 100g of icing sugar

Roasted rhubarb

Orange-infused sugar

  • 200g of water
  • 200g of sugar
  • 1 orange
  • caster sugar

Crystallised puff pastry

  • 200g of puff pastry, all butter
  • icing sugar

Orange segments

Vanilla Chantilly

  • double cream
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • icing sugar


  • Blow torch
  • Muslin cloth
  • Blender
  • Dehydrator
  • Chinois


Begin by making the rhubarb jus. Combine all of the ingredients in a heatproof bowl, cover with cling film and place over a pan of barely simmering water. Leave to soften for 45-60 minutes, so the rhubarb releases plenty of juice
  • 1000g of rhubarb, frozen
  • 1 vanilla pod, seeds removed
  • 100g of icing sugar
Pour the softened rhubarb into a chinois strainer lined with 4 layers of muslin, allowing all the clear juice to strain through. Leave to strain naturally overnight, without pushing or applying pressure. When ready, refrigerate until required
Make the orange sugar by combining water and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to the boil, stir until dissolved and remove from the heat
  • 200g of water
  • 200g of sugar
  • 1 orange
Peel the zest from the orange, taking care to remove all of the white pith. Place into a separate saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Strain and repeat this process twice more, before adding the zest to the sugar syrup in a separate saucepan
Allow the syrup and zest to simmer gently for 30 minutes, before straining and placing on a tray lined with silicone paper. Reserve a small amount of the zest for garnish and de-hydrate the remainder until completely dry. Alternatively, place in the oven on a very low heat overnight
Combine the dried orange zest with caster sugar in a spice grinder using the ratio of 1 part zest: 3 parts sugar (in grams). Blitz to create the spiced orange sugar and set aside until required
  • caster sugar
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
To roast the rhubarb, place the rhubarb sticks in a small oven tray and pour over 100ml of the jus. Cover the tray with tin foil and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. When roasted and still slightly firm, set aside to cool, reserving 1 rhubarb stick for the purée
Make the purée by blitzing the reserved rhubarb stick and dash of the poaching liquor in a blender. Blend on a high speed, adding a little more of the liquor until the purée is very smooth. Pass through a fine strainer and store in a squeeze bottle until required
Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 7
To make the pastry garnish, roll the puff pastry to a thickness of 5mm. Dust with icing sugar and place in the fridge to chill and rest for 10 minutes. Bake in the oven for 5-10 minutes until light and golden brown in colour
  • 200g of puff pastry
  • icing sugar
While the pastry cools slightly, preheat the oven to 250°C/gas mark 9
Cut the pastry to the required shapes and sizes, dust heavily with icing sugar, and place into the preheated oven until the sugar becomes a deep caramel - take care not to let them burn
While the sugar in the puff pastry is still hot and sticky, sprinkle the pastry with the infused orange sugar while it is still hot from the oven, and set to one side
For the orange segments, glaze each segment using a blow torch to lightly caramelise. Add the orange juice to a pan, reduce on a medium heat to a glaze/syrupy consistency and brush over the segments
Prepare the Chantilly cream by combining the cream, vanilla and sugar in a bowl and whisking to form medium peaks. Transfer to a piping bag and refrigerate until required
  • double cream
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • icing sugar
To serve, cut the sticks of roast rhubarb in to 8cm batons, using any off-cuts for smaller decorative pieces. Divide the prepared rhubarb evenly between 4 plates. Slice the glazed orange segments in half and divide between the plates along with the reserved orange zest from step 5
Pipe small dots of the Chantilly cream around the plate. Finally, add a rocher of vanilla ice cream, some violet petals, coriander cress and the crystallised puff pastry. Serve immediately
First published in 2015

Graham Hornigold’s expert pastry skills have been refined in some of the best restaurants and hotels in London, effortlessly adding delicate, refreshing touches to dessert menus. Today, he runs gourmet doughnut brand Longboys, which has three sites and stocks the likes of Harrods and Selfridges.

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