Spring came early to Vancouver this year, hot on the heels of the winter that never was. Our daffodil bulbs, forgotten in a pot on the patio, started sprouting in January. By mid-February, the sakura (cherry) and ume (plum) blossoms had already made their debut. It should have been no surprise then that Bike the Blossoms was moved up several weeks, from late April to today. Yet, despite living pretty much on the route, we somehow remained blissfully unaware of the date change and managed to spontaneously “bike the blossoms” all on our own this afternoon.
Admittedly, I’m a little bit sad that our snowshoes spent the winter gathering dust in the closet instead of clawing their way up powdery peaks. On the plus side, these clear skies and high temps have made for some fun (normally inaccessible) hikes and killer sunset runs. Sweating in long sleeves and tights makes my skin crawl, and stepping on a treadmill makes me feel like a hamster in a cage, so all this running outside in shorts and tank tops adds up to one happy me.
Right now, I’m training for the BMO Vancouver Half-Marathon on May 3.* Aside from lots of running, half-marathon training means lots of eating [insert heart-eyed emoji here]. So, in honour of spring training and pink blossoms, I give you rhubarb ripple frozen yogurt.
* This is my second year as a RUN4HOPE runner, raising money for the Canadian Mental Health Association’s youth programs. If that sounds like something you’d like to support and you have a few dollars to spare, please do!
- 520 g (4 cups) frozen, chopped rhubarb
- 200 g (1 cup) granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1,440 g (6 cups) full-fat, Greek-style yogurt
- 300 g (1½ cups) granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a medium saucepan, stir together the rhubarb, sugar, ginger and lemon juice.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a steady simmer.
- Continue cooking the mixture until it reduces by half and is thick enough to easily coat the back of a spoon. I ended up with about 2 cups of compote.
- Remove the mixture from heat and cool it completely before using.
- In a medium bowl, stir together the yogurt, sugar and vanilla extract. Cover and refrigerate until chilled through (at least 1 hour).
- Process the chilled mixture in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's directions.
- Working quickly, scoop half the frozen yogurt into an airtight storage container, spoon ½ cup of cooled rhubarb compote on top. Repeat with the remaining frozen yogurt and another ½ cup of compote. Starting in one corner, insert a butter knife vertically until it touches the bottom of the container and then draw "S" shapes the length of the container to create swirls.
- Freeze until firm (at least 4 hours).
- Remove the ice cream from the freezer 10 minutes before serving to soften it slightly.