rhubarb sundae with blueberries and shortbread crumble

Posted on July 8, 2012

I had a bunch of fresh blueberries from my mom’s garden, a Sunset magazine in my mailbox, a dinner party to go to and this sundae was born.

This sundae is wonderful—better than I expected. There just is something really magical about cold ice cream with a warm sauce. It’s like a deconstructed blueberry-rhubarb pie, and because each of the components are made separately, you can easily adapt the recipe to the ingredients and amount of time you have on hand. You could swap the blueberries for another berry or even stone fruit—whatever is in season or on hand. I made the shortbread from scratch, but you could certainly make due with a store-bought shortbread or vanilla cookies. And while the rhubarb in the ice cream is really wonderful and I really recommend you give it a go, you could skip that all together if you’re especially short on time and just serve it with vanilla ice cream.

Rhubarb Sundae with Blueberries and Shortbread Crumble, adapted from Sunset Magazine

For the ice cream
4 cups vanilla bean ice cream
4 stalks rhubarb, sliced thinly
6 T brown sugar

In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the rhubarb and brown sugar. Cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mixture has a jam like consistency. Remove from the heat and puree. Put in the refrigerator to chill for about 20 minutes.

Once the rhubarb is chilled, stir into the vanilla ice cream and return to the freezer.

For the shortbread
1/2 cup butter, softened
5 T sugar
1 t vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 T flour
1/8 t kosher salt
1/8 t cinnamon
1 T sugar

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix 1 T sugar and 1/8 t cinnamon in a bowl and set aside. Beat butter, 5 T sugar, vanilla and salt until light and fluffy. Add flour and mix on low until large clumps form.

Bring the dough together with your hands. Roll it out until about 1/4″ thick on a floured surface. Mine rolled out quite messy, but it doesn’t really matter since you break it into large pieces before serving anyway. Transfer the dough to the baking sheet and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Put in the freezer for 10 minutes.

Bake 15 – 20 minutes, until golden. Cool and then break into large shards.

For the blueberries
2 cups blueberries
1/2 lemon, juiced

Just before serving, heat blueberries and lemon in small saucepan over medium-low heat. Meanwhile, scoop rhubarb ice cream into bowls. Just as the blueberries begin to juice, pour them over the ice cream. Add shortbread shards and enjoy!

-Emily