I love the season of the local Farmer’s Markets. Around New England, because it gets so darn cold in the winter, they generally run from the end of April through early November (outdoor markets, that is). They bring the fresh goodness that are the first strawberries of the year (which are sold out in the first two hours), early lettuces, spinach by the bag, local asparagus, and bundles of rhubarb.

When Neil and I were milling about the Market last weekend, we saw beautiful bundles of rhubarb and I remarked on them, and he spoiled me and bought me two. So don’t you know that I began grinding the gears inside of my head immediately to decide what I’d do with them. Would I roast chunks of the stalks drizzled with simple syrup, or would I bake an up-side-down cake. Should I make a tea bread, or a pie? Should I grill it all? My decision was made the next morning at breakfast when we awoke to half a loaf of artisan Italian bread, rhubarb, and farm-fresh eggs. Rhubarb compote over thick french toast it would be!


  • 8 stalks of rhubarb (about a foot long)
  • 2/3 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Cointreau


  1. Cut the rhubarb into one-inch pieces
  2. Add the rhubarb and the sugar to a large sauce pan and let them simmer at a medium-low heat for about 20 minutes
  3. Give the pan a stir and the rhubarb should fall apart
  4. Add the Cointreau

I enjoyed left-over compote for days mixed into my plain yogurt. Over french toast, it’s so wonderfully sweet that absolutely no syrup was necessary. This would also be great with (smeared all over) a pork tenderloin… or on top of vanilla ice cream.