This dessert gets its exotic touch from star anise, a licorice-y seasoning that's used in Vietnamese cooking. Find it in your supermarket's spice aisle.

Romney Steele
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Credit: Iain Bagwell; Styling: Emma Star Jensen

Recipe Summary test

1 hr
Serves 4


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 375°. In a 9-in. square baking pan, toss sugar, vanilla bean and seeds, star anise, and orange zest to combine. Halve rhubarb lengthwise, and if stalks are large, split again lengthwise. Cut pieces about 2 in. long on a diagonal and combine with sugar mixture. Stir in wine along with pepper to taste.

  • Bake until rhubarb is tender when pierced but still holds its shape, 15 to 20 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer rhubarb to a shallow bowl; discard star anise.

  • Pour rhubarb juices into a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then simmer until reduced to 1/2 cup, 6 to 9 minutes. Pour over rhubarb. Let cool, occasionally spooning syrup over fruit.

  • Set meringues in bowls. Spoon fruit and syrup on top, discarding vanilla bean. Add a spoonful of crème fraîche to each and sprinkle with pistachios.

  • Make ahead: Through step 3, chilled, up to 1 day.

Nutrition Facts

381 calories; calories from fat 38%; protein 4.2g; fat 16g; saturated fat 8.5g; carbohydrates 55g; fiber 3.6g; sodium 125mg; cholesterol 25mg.