When you set out to make the kind of cute adorable tartlets that people “ooo” and “ahh” over as if they were a newborn child, but end up with…Quasimodo.  In pastry crust rhubarb compote form.

It’s really a test of character as to whether or not you can hold your head up high, and with all the disdain and snootiness you can muster, say to anyone who dares criticize, “They’re rustic.”


Then follow it up with an eye-roll and a really good menacing glare.  Like, duh-these-are-what-tartlets-are-supposed-to-look-like-so-you-obviously-don’t-know-anything-about-anything.  That kind of glare.

Oh, yeah.  You showed them.


Actually, this technique can be applied to almost anything in life that is awkward and ugly and mildly deformed, but still kind of cute in it’s own right.

For example.

My dance skills.  Rustic.

My bedroom floor.  Rustic.

Any and all “results” (I use that term loosely), I’ve gotten in the past year of my Ph/D.  Rustic.

Me in the two-piece bathing suit I tried on yesterday that had me wondering why I even made these tartlets in the first place when I should have been making a salad instead.  Rustic.

See what I mean?  It’s pretty all-purpose.


Luckily, at least in the case of these tartlets, “rustic” does not necessarily preclude “delicious”.

They are from Good to the Grain, which is a gorgeous cookbook that I don’t cook from often enough.  The pastry crust is not your traditional pie crust, but is cornmeal-infused with a base of a corn flour/all purpose flour mix.  This makes it a little more delicate but wonderfully tasty, with a slightly crunchy texture that is to-die for.  Kind of like a good shortbread cookie.   Mmmm.

And then there’s the rhubarb vanilla compote, which is the ideal mix of sweet tart and tangy.  It’s what turns these ugly duckling tartlets into swans once they hit your tastebuds.

The de-rustic-ifying factor.

Now if only I could find such a thing to make my experiments in lab look way more insightful than they actually are, or to make my bathing suit look like something I could actually wear out in public…that would be lovely.  But until then.  I’m just gonna embrace my new favorite adjective.

Rustic.  Let’s go with it.

(Read on after the recipe for a fabulously delicious GIVEAWAY!)


Rustic Rhubarb Tarts
Makes 10-16, adapted from Smitten Kitchen and Good to the Grain


  • 1 cup corn flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp kosher or coarse salt
  • 1 stick (4 oz) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 batch Rhubarb Vanilla Compote (recipe to follow)


  1. Combine the dry ingredients (corn flour, all purpose flour, cornmeal, sugar, and salt) in the bowl of a food processor.  Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.  Add in the heavy cream and egg yolks and pulse to combine.
  2. Divide dough into as few as ten or as many as sixteen equal pieces.  Using the palm of your hand, squish each piece into a rough circle, about 3-4 inches in diameter.
  3. Spoon about 1 1/2-2 tsp of rhubarb compote into the center of each circle.  Fold the edges of the dough toward the compote and up to create a ruffled edge.  Complete around the whole perimeter.  Transfer the tart to a parchment lined baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining dough.  Place in the freezer to chill for 1 hour.
  4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375.  Bake the still-frozen tarts for 25-30 minutes or until the edges of the tart are brown and the filling is bubbling and thick.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Rhubarb Vanilla Compote


  • 1 1/2 lb rhubarb, cut in half lengthwise and sliced into thin slices on a diagonal
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract


  1. Set aside 1 1/2 cups rhubarb.  Place the remaining rhubarb, brown sugar, and vanilla into a large heavy-bottomed pot.  Cook over medium-low heat, covered, for 15 minutes or until saucy.  Remove cover, raise heat to medium, and cook an additional 10-15 minutes or until rhubarb sauce is thick and leaves a trail when you drag a spoon through it.  Mix in the 1 1/2 cups rhubarb.  Remove from heat.  Place in a large bowl and let cool.


My friend Lauren, who blogs over at Keep It Sweet is living her foodie dream.  She left her job in December to open up her own ONLINE BAKERY!!!  We correspond in some way at least twelve times a week (either by email, text, twitter) and if we go more than two weeks without seeing each other, I start to stress eat nutella at the sheer awfulness of it all.  This is the girl who introduced me to 50 Shades of Grey.  So you know I love her.

Anyways, we had plans to see each other last week after not hanging out for at least a MONTH, and so when she asked if she could bring me some of her online bakery products to sample, I jumped at the chance to take a little bit of Lauren home with me to eat at all hours of the night and to share with The.Boy.  Yes, I know that sounds wrong.  But it’s how I roll.

And everything we ate was amazing.  Below are the peanut butter chocolate chip cookie sandwiches with chocolate buttercream and fudgy caramel pecan brownies (which are really the fudgiest brownies I’ve EVER had).  She also sent over a peanut butter cup stuffed triple chocolate cookie.  Which I hid from The.Boy. and ate the night after my hospital stay. It made my day.

Lauren was sweet enough to also offer to send one of YOU GUYS a dozen of any product of your choice.  To enter, just leave a comment about which of her products you would want and remember to leave an email address so I can contact you if you win!  You can also use the coupon code EATSWELL10 from now until August 31st to get 10% off on any purchases. The winner will be announced one week from today.

PicMonkey Collage

You are reading this post on Eats Well With Others at Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of Eats Well With Others. All rights reserved by Joanne Bruno.
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117 Responses to Rustic Rhubarb Tartlets and a GIVEAWAY!

  1. Nice save with the rustic, LOL, but they do look delicious! Your friend’s products look delicious, especially the brownie and the stuffed cookies!

  2. Rustic is totally where it’s at~ No stress, it was meant to look that way… and heck, my tummy can’t tell the difference. 😉

  3. Lynn says:

    Corn flour – I had forgotten about corn flour. The little tarts certainly are rustic, but look tasty!

    Well I’d like to try that peanut butter cup triple chocolate cookie. 🙂 My email address is gth0207(at) (That brownie looks darn good, too – I might be doing some ordering.) 🙂

  4. So, I totally thought you were going to say “My Bedroom Skills. Rustic.” And then I was going to say “TMI!!!” 🙂

    In all seriousness, I’m a rustic baker, like you, so this is exactly how my tartlets would turn out.

    And, gosh, I can only pick one? Seriously? It all looks good! But those cookie sandwiches looks fabulous!

  5. Simply Life says:

    Um, yeah- I want to try EVERYTHING that Lauren makes! If I had to pick just one, today it would be the Cookie Sandwich: Milk Chocolate Almond Toffee Oatmeal Cookies

  6. T says:

    Oh goodness! All of those sandwich cookies sound so delish that I’d just get the variety pack of those beauties.

  7. bellini says:

    These are pretty darn cute if you ask me.

  8. Liz says:

    Everything looks amazing–can I eat it all? haha But if I had to choose, it would be the chocolate covered cookie butter pretzels.

  9. Lauren can attest I’ve been entering every giveaway to win her treats since she started her business–I’m on a mission! 😉 I’m dying to try the black and white blondies.

    P.S. My productivity at work today? Will be rustic.

  10. Christina says:

    I’d have to try the salted caramel butter bars. I’ve been into the salted caramel lately…mmmm.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Congrats to Lauren for doing what she loves, and best of luck! I doubt she does international shipments, so if I were to win I’d send my mom a surprise. She has a serious weakness for peanut butter and chocolate (which she passed on to me :P) so it’d have to be the Peanut Butter Cup Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies! Mmmm. [email protected]

  12. Sam says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only one whose rustic rhubarb tartlets looked a little too rustic! I found the dough to be hard to work with (but delicious)!

    I would love to try the Peppermint Patty Stuffed Triple. Although D would eat them all before I had a chance…hmm maybe I’ve found the perfect finishing-your-dissertation gift for the man who wants nothing but cookies?

    cookingmwtmycsa (at) gmail (dot) com

  13. Gosh, this post is exciting!!!!! 1) I ADORE rhubarb, and I also appreciate that they’re rustic. 🙂 They look fantastic. And what an awesome giveaway!! I would love to try the brownie and blondie variety pack. I have a weakness for blondies… Love Lauren’s goodies!

  14. Hotly Spiced says:

    How wonderful these are. They look so inviting and delicious. And I bet you look amazing in your swimsuit and so you should indulge in many of these – skip the salad! xx

  15. What beautiful cookies 🙂 I think I would have to go with the White Chocolate, Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies, I’m always in search of the perfect Oatmeal cookies, yum! [email protected]

  16. Debbie says:

    Love the word rustic! I have yet to bake something with rhubarb…I haven’t had rhubarb in years and need to try a recipe using it. I don’t know what I would pick from Lauren’s goodies. I think I would let her pick what she thinks is her best goodie!!! My palate loves all things cookies, cake and candies!!!

  17. I love rustic and I love these! Nothing better than rhubarb and buttery pastry.

  18. Danielle says:

    I love rustic! These sound delicious – I still have yet to cook with rhubarb.

  19. I need those Peanut Butter Cup Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies in my life!

  20. Love this post! And, I’d have to go with the salted caramel butter bars – yum!

    [email protected]

  21. SallyBR says:

    I am a simple woman, of simple pleasures, except when there’s chocolate involved

    I’d love to get a dozen of her Triple Chocolate Cookies…. 😉

  22. Girl, I think all my baked goods are rustic, so I know what you mean.
    I love Lauren’s blog and everything she bakes makes me drool! I’d love to win some of those fudgy caramel pecan brownies!!

  23. nina says:

    lol thats really rustic…i love reading your post. I love anything chocolaty..would like to have a dozen of them:)

    [email protected]

  24. marie says:

    Definitely the salted caramel butter bars. How exciting to be living her dream. And my dance skills are ‘rustic’ too 🙂

  25. I would love to try the milk chocolate toffee rugelach!

    [email protected]

  26. No wonder I have always loved the term rustic. It’s so all-encompassing! These tarts do sound pretty amazing.

    And oh my gosh, congrats to Lauren, I didn’t realize. I love to hear about people living their dream!

  27. MarthaT says:

    The Salted Caramel Butter Bars sound wonderful right now with a cup of coffee. 🙂
    [email protected]

  28. i’ve been lucky enough to experience lauren’s baking but never her brownies – i would love to try those!

  29. Erica House says:

    White chocolate cranberry oatmeal cookies for sure!

  30. Marcia says:

    milk chocolate toffee rugelach for sure!

    marciamoore2 AT hotmail

  31. Dam you Joanne! Everything looks amazing!! I could stare at the photos of all the cookies and blonies and brownies, ohhh maybe a screen saver? I would get the cookie variety pack because I want one of every cookie, however I really think I Need the Peanut Butter Cup Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies in my life. Sigh…

  32. Whoa! Break me off a piece of that!! I would LOVE the peanut butter cup stuffed chocolate cookies!! Put that in my belly! My email is [email protected]. Thanks for doing this giveaway- her website is awesome too!

  33. Jenna says:

    Oooh man–I would love a batch of her Fudgy Caramel Pecan Brownies. They look so rich and amazing!

    ([email protected])

  34. Kristin says:

    These are so cute and would be perfect for a party. I really wish they sold rhubarb out here. 🙁

    Your friends sweets look delicious. It’s hard to choose my favorite because you can’t go wrong with chocolate, caramel and peanut butter! So I’d have to go with the cookie variety. LoL I just can’t choose one.
    holycannolirec AT aol DOT com

  35. Elizabeth says:

    Um, this is the best giveaway ever. I won’t lie, I’ve spent ample amounts of time on Lauren’s website drooling over the baked goods. This would literally make my week. I can’t even decide. Some type of sandwich cookie. Btw, I def want to meet Lauren when I move back to the city

  36. Anne says:

    Yum! I was so, so torn but I’d have to say the Peppermint Patty Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies. I love the chocolate mint combo!

  37. daphne says:

    Gosh, I’m not sure if I qualify.. but it would be peanut butter cup stuffed triple chocolate cookies! Who can resist that!?!?!?

    And hey, rustic is delicious. It is HOMELY! Give me one of those tarts now!

  38. Karis Ann says:

    Quasimodo. Love it. I think your rustic tarts are gorgeous and am hoping I can still find rhubarb here so I can try them!

  39. Stephanie says:

    I’m a simple girl – the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies look amazing! Now, let me go find a cloth to wipe the drool off of my keyboard… All those desserts look delicious!

  40. Danielle says:

    Can I get a sampler pack?! Seriously, they all look delicious but the Milk Chocolate Almond Toffee Sandwich cookies are calling my name! Thanks for an awesome giveaway!!

  41. HA! When a creation of mine comes out perfect it’s gourmet and when it comes out shitty its rustic!

  42. Hey, rustic works, and I don’t care how rustic something looks if it tastes delicious. I’ve only baked with rhubarb once…wonder if I can still get it. I like the sound of this filling!

  43. Shannon says:

    haha, ‘rustic’ results is right!!

    as for the goodies… i’m tempted by the salted caramel, but found myself drawn to the pb&j rugelah 🙂

  44. Sara says:

    Those little rhubarb tarts look super delicious! Love them. Great giveaway too! If I won, I’d want the Milk Chocolate Almond Toffee Oatmeal Cookies filled with marshmallow buttercream. YUM!

  45. So cute! And I’m glad I’m not the only one still posting rhubarb stuff 🙂

    That’s so cool your friend is following her dream! I wish I had the gonads to make a switch like that…

  46. emily says:

    milk chocolate almond toffee oatmeal cookies!!

    ([email protected])

  47. Every time I hear or read the word tartlets, I think of Steve on Friends (Jon Lovitz) who was stoned and kept repeating the word “tartlets.” Anyway, I love these babies, especially that compote!

  48. Beth says:

    My housekeeping skills are rustic.

    And if I had to choose one, I’d probably go with the peanut butter cup stuffed triple chocolate cookies. But only if I absolutely had to choose one.

  49. geni says:

    Thanks for making me laugh. My sense of style…rustic. This new lingo totally works for me.

  50. Amy says:

    My fashion sense (or lack thereof)…rustic. And my ability to help kids with their craft projects. Rustic. IMHO, who cares what it looks like – as long as it tastes good! A rhubarb tart? Paleezzze.

  51. Anonymous says:

    Salted caramel butter bars!

  52. I dig rustic! If it tastes good, I’m all over it – especially with rhubarb!

  53. Zac says:

    Fudgy caramel pecan brownies to go fo sho!
    [email protected]

  54. Megan says:

    oh my god, the salted caramel butter bars!

    [email protected]

  55. You are making think twice about Rhubarb right now. Wow – Lauren’s store looks amazing! I would love a little piece of the East Coast with some Cinnamon Chocolate Rugelach!

  56. Donna says:

    Only YOU could make me drool over rhubarb. And “rustic” is my middle name!

  57. I love brownies, so I would have to choose one of Lauren’s brownies (Caramel Lovers)!

  58. Johanna GGG says:

    Snap! I posted my baking disaster yesterday too – I just didn’t know they were rustic as well as exploding 🙂 I should have come to you for advice. I am sure I would gobble up one of these tarts and be begging for more

  59. I haven’t tasted rhubarb since I was very young & didn’t really like it, but these look & sound amazing. This is what I’ve been waiting for to try it again. Def baking this weekend. All those cookies & brownies sound so good it’s very hard to choose. I think I’d like the sandwich cookie variety. Get to try more than one that way. Thanks for the chance & for letting everyone know about this great baked goods.

  60. i would like to try Lauren’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Rugelach

  61. I would love to try Lauren’s Peanut Butter Cup Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies, they look so yummy.

  62. Yum, I have made those tarts before and they were delicious! Thank you for reminding me of them. I would have to go for one of your friends super chocolately delights.

  63. Katie says:

    My dance skills will be described as “rustic” from now on. Thanks for the suggestion. I’d have to go for the peanut butter cup stuffed triple chocolate cookies. YUM!

  64. Kari says:

    I am a big fan of rustic – but now think I’ve been missing out, as previously I’ve only applied the term to food. It’s now being expanded to include many (many!) other aspects of my life…dance skills included 😉

  65. That Girl says:

    They’re cute – kind of hamentaschen-y.

  66. Holly says:

    The fudgy caramel pecan brownies sound yummy.

  67. These rhubarb tartlets look delectable!
    p.s You may have noticed that my blog didn’t work last three days, now blogger finally fixed the problem and my blog works fine now.

  68. Guru Uru says:

    Oh my gosh, these look absolutely stunning my friend 😀
    Much adored gorgeous little tarts!


  69. love2dine says:

    Oh man! Now that flavor is going to be in my head till the longest time. YUM! 🙂

  70. Rustic is my new favourite word and really is versatile isn’t it. 😉 Your tartlets are gorgeous, definitely rustic and delicious! 😀

  71. Hannah says:

    I have absolutely no qualms enjoying a “rustic” dessert when it looks this good. I’ve never tried a cornmeal crust before, and especially paired with rhubarb, it sounds fantastic.

  72. Dining Alone says:

    wow the milk chocolate toffee rugelach for sure!!! Also, I cannot remember the last time I had rhubarb!

  73. Mary says:

    The rugelach is to die for and the tarts sound delicious. I still don’t know how you find the time to do all that you do. Have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  74. Cathleen says:

    Haha, that’s great. I have definitely prepared more “rustic” desserts than even decent looking ones. But I’ve got to say, your tartlets look delicious, I would gobble them up in a second

  75. It’s too hot in Texas to build a camp fire, so I would go with the smores cookies and some air conditioning!

  76. Miriam says:

    Love the “rustic,” ness. 🙂
    And dude, I am all over those peanut butter stuffed triple chocolate cookies!!
    [email protected]
    Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

  77. Camila Faria says:

    If only I could find rhubarb over here!

  78. love rhubarb can u believe I only cooked it for the first time last week 🙂

  79. Ooooh. The salted caramel bars. YUM.

  80. Suzi says:

    Rustic is cool and truthfully these tarts are cute they really do look delicious. Still haven’t cooked rhubarb yet. Gotta give that a whirl sometime soon. Have a great weekend.

  81. Mo 'Betta says:

    Rustic is the chic. This giveaway looks amazing….I think I want (everything) but choose the brownies & blondes pack!

  82. These totally remind me of Hamentashen! I love their rustic look. My wedding is going to have a rustic look, so i’m all for it!

  83. JasmyneTea says:

    Hah, I think my partner would understand what you mean about “rustic” results, his experiments aren’t working out so well either… And I get to hear ALL about it.
    Also, Salted Caramel Butter Bars? I wish your friend shipped to Australia 🙁

  84. A lot of the time, my dinner is RUSTIC! and I do not wear two piece bathing suits anymore 🙂

  85. ilene says:

    I would love the cinnamon chocolate rugelach.

  86. Katerina says:

    These rustic little things are great for my afternoon cravings!

  87. I would never be able to choose so I would definitely go with the cookie variety pack. You can never loose with cookies!

  88. Valerie says:

    I can’t choose just one! I’m loving the look of the black & white
    blondies, the chocolate chip cookie sandwiches, and the peanut butter
    stuffed tripple chocolate cookies. Can you say NUM?!

  89. Jenn Kendall says:

    i adore the term rustic 🙂 your tartlets look delicious, and i love the vanilla and rhubarb combination! and i’m loving the cookie sandwich variety pack, though it is so hard to choose, everything looks amazing!

  90. grace says:

    caramel lover’s box for me! what a great idea–good for lauren!

  91. Reeni says:

    I wouldn’t hesitate to pop these in my mouth! I’m all about rustic. Rustic is just another word for delicious! And how do I decide? All of her treats are so delectable! Peanut Butter Stuffed Triple Chocolate Cookies. OMG.

  92. Becky says:

    everything looks wonderful! but the black & white blondies for sure 🙂

  93. beti says:

    I really laughed when I saw that you dance “rustic” the tarts look pretty rustic as well but they are still pretty and I wish Lauren luck!

  94. Carolyn Jung says:

    Love these! They look like overgrown thumb-print cookies, which I can never get enough of.

  95. I adore small desserts. These are adoralbe!

  96. Sarah says:

    all of those desserts look amazing! i think the smores cookies sound pretty great though. 🙂

  97. I’m totally liking the cornmeal idea. Corn flour? Hmmmm, that’s a new one for me. Rustic is definitely a great way to coverup most anything. These look delicious. I made your rhubarb pie, and then made more of the filling. Tomorrow, I was going to make crumbles with it. Hmmm…rustic tarts? Has me thinking. I love your friend’s entrepreneurial spirit. The cookies look pretty amazing!

  98. I LOVE rustic – or as I so artsy-fartsy describe it “free form” – tarts. 🙂 They look so homey and welcoming. 🙂

  99. Kari says:

    The Salted Caramel Butter Bars look fantastic!

  100. The cinnamon chocolate rugelach look amazing!

  101. AubreyLaine says:

    I would choose the perfect chocolate chip cookies.
    family74014 at gmail dot com

  102. Nicole says:

    My mom used to call my pottery rustic when i first started taking a class and would bring her the results… i guess i shouldn’t have been offended!

    Pick just 1 amazing desert?
    I guess for the biggest bang, and nothing i could ever make… wait… that’s still alot…
    ok – peanut butter stuffed triple chocolate! or maybe the milk chocolate toffee rugelach or…

  103. Super B says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  104. karen says:

    caramel pecan brownies sound sooooo good!
    [email protected]

  105. the peanut butter cup stuffed cookies sound divine right about now…

  106. oh it has to be the white chocolate cranberry oatmeal cookies. I love oats. You can reach me on my blog 😉

  107. Lisa says:

    they all look amazing!!!! It would have to be either the carmel lovers only box or the milk chocolate toffee rugelach- they look too delicious to decide : )

    ([email protected])

  108. Keena says:

    I really want to try the Salted Caramel Butter Bars! I’ve been wanting to try salted caramel for a while, but haven’t found the right thing to test it with. Also, I tried making a blood orange caramel tart once and found out how quickly caramel goes from perfect to disaster- and I still have the scar to prove it! So if someone can do caramel right, they can do anything right.

    [email protected]

  109. Jen D. says:

    I would like to try the white chocolate cranberry oatmeal cookies

  110. Taryn says:

    I would LOVE to try the Black and White Blondies!! I’m excited to see this giveaway, because Lauren is truly living my dream, and I’m excited she’s doing so well with it! Gives me hope for the future 🙂

  111. Chris says:

    Why am I spraying your tarts with WD40? You said dey was rusted!

    (quit hitting me)

  112. Anonymous says:

    The salted caramel bars, the oatmeal & the caramel brownies would be my picks!

  113. spongeee says:

    Chocolate buttercream and fudgy caramel pecan brownies look absolutely amazing! definitely want to try those!
    I’m loving the website! I wish they had an option to deliver to Canada!

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