Strawberry Rhubarb and Cheese Danish Ring

With summer just a month away, I love picking and baking with fresh rhubarb. Yup we have a rhubarb plant right in our back yard. When I went to college out in Lancaster Pennsylvania, rhubarb was very plentiful. Almost every home that backed up to campus had at least 3 or 4 plants. Admittedly I never had rhubarb when I lived out there, it wasn't until I really began to experiment with cooking and baking that I took the opportunity to taste this red stem. 

Now I love rhubarb paired with strawberries. Typically I make strawberry-rhubarb jam, but I came across this recipe in the June 2nd issue of First magazine and thought I'd give it a whirl!

What I like about the recipe, aside from the rhubarb, strawberries, cream cheese and white chocolate, was the fact that the dough used is actually two types or refrigerated dough, making this recipe fast and easy.

Spring Danish Ring

1 3/4 cups chopped fresh rhubarb stems
1 3/4 cups chopped strawberries
1/2 cup strawberry preserves
2 T. cornstarch
1 8 oz pkg refrigerated crescent rolls
2 pkg. 8 oz refrigerated dinner rolls
1/2 cup (4 oz) Neufchatel cheese at room temp
1 oz white chocolate for baking, melted

In a medium post over medium heat, bring the first three ingredients to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer 15 minutes while stirring. In a small bowl mix together the cornstarch and 2 T cold water, add to the pot. Simmer one minute and then remove from heat and let cool. Drop 10 tablespoon size dollops of the strawberry rhubarb mixture onto a plastic or wax paper lined baking sheet. Freeze for one hour. Set the remainder of the mixture aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line a 9" springform pan with wax paper and spray with cooking spray. Unroll the crescent rolls and press into the bottom of the pan. Separate the biscuits and roll them with a rolling pin or press them out with your fingers until thin. Now wrap each one of the frozen dollops in a biscuit making sure to pinch it closed, and place around the edge of the pan. Spoon the remainder of the strawberry mixture into the center.

In another small bowl mix the cheese with the white chocolate and swirl all but about 3 T into the fruit mixture. Bake in the oven for 25-35 minutes ( it took closer to 35 minutes in my oven) or until the dough is golden in color. Remove from oven let cool. Unmold the rind and drizzle with remaining cheese/chocolate mixture. 

The kids just got home from school and were chomping at the bit to try a slice. It got 2 thumbs up from my two.

Wishing you a great Memorial Day Weekend!!!

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