Strawberry-Rhubarb Spoonbread for Spring

I’m not sure I’d make this again — somehow it used every mixing bowl in the cupboard — but it tasted great, and looks beautiful. I think next time I’ll just make the compote to serve on biscuits or with cookies.

Here’s the recipe, as published originally in the San Francisco Chronicle:

Serves 8

The compote
* 1 pound rhubarb, cut into 1-inch chunks
* 2/3 cup sugar, or more to taste
* 1 pound strawberries, hulled, cut in half and sliced
* — Lemon juice, to taste

The spoonbread
* 2 cups diced strawberries (from about 3/4 pound fruit)
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 3 cups milk
* 1 1/2 cups cornmeal
* 6 tablespoons butter, softened
* 6 eggs, separated
* 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1 teaspoon kosher salt
* — Whipped cream for serving

For the compote: In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, cook rhubarb with 1/3 cup sugar, stirring occasionally, until fruit is softened, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, toss the strawberries with the remaining 1/3 cup sugar and set aside to macerate while the rhubarb is cooking. When the rhubarb is done, combine with the strawberries, and add lemon juice to taste.

For the spoonbread: Preheat oven to 375°. Generously butter a large oval souffle dish or 13-by-9-inch baking dish.

Toss the strawberries with 1/4 cup of the sugar, and set aside to macerate.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, scald the milk until it is just about to boil. Whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and cornmeal in a steady stream, and continue to whisk constantly until the mixture is smooth and thickened, about 2 minutes.

Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Mix in butter while the cornmeal mixture is still warm. Set aside and cool to room temperature.

Beat egg yolks lightly and whisk into the cornmeal mixture along with the baking powder, salt. Combine well. Fold in the strawberries and their juice.

In a clean bowl of a stand mixer, whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold in a quarter of the egg whites to lighten the batter, then fold in the remainder. Spoon into prepared dish and bake until golden and puffy, about 40-45 minutes.

Serve with the compote and whipped cream.

Per serving: 435 calories, 11 g protein, 63 g carbohydrate, 16 g fat (9 g saturated), 195 mg cholesterol, 407 mg sodium, 5 g fiber.

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