One of the delights of our month in Heuvelton, New York, was a patch of ripening rhubarb behind the shed in my late brother-in-law’s home.
At least it was a delight for Monte, who makes his own rhubarb pie and rhubarb sauce. As for me, I’m not a rhubarb fan.
We were in Heuvelton to clear up Monte’s brother’s estate. Monte was Elwin’s executor, and we had to deal with the contents of Elwin’s house and sell the house and the car. In the midst of this challenging task, which included an auction, Monte enjoyed fresh rhubarb. The day after the auction he hosted the Holland family reunion at the house, during which he and three of his nieces made a rhubarb pie for the festivities (the recipe they used is typed in at the end of this post). One of the nieces made an apple pie for me…
Back home one resident allowed Monte to pick the rhubarb she didn’t use because she disliked it. However, that is not the norm. Monte can’t understand why people who grow rich yields of rhubarb on their property, but don’t like it, won’t offer the crop to persons who do like it.
Several days later we met with Monte’s two remaining sisters for his brother in law’s birthday. Dessert: blueberry-rhubarb pie. The group concluded that older persons like rhubarb while the younger generation doesn’t have a taste for it. A newspaper article seemed to confirm this:
Sam Wiseman associates rhubarb with nostalgia.
“It’s such an old-fashioned crop,” she says. (Sam is short for Samantha.) “A lot of people remember it from their youth, seeing their grandmothers grow it in the garden.” What’s more, rhubarb plants can have a long life. “Some people say that they’re still growing their grandmother’s rhubarb.”1
I must note here that our son, Nolan, is an exception. Recently, while in Munich, Germany, he emailed Monte requesting his recipe for rhubarb pie. According to Nolan, they don’t (more…)