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Put the rhubarb in a saucepan and add the sugar, 75ml water and the liquid glucose. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod and add to the pan (with the pod) along with the star anise.
Place over a medium-high heat and bring to the boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat slightly and cook for 15 mins until the sugar has dissolved and the fruit is soft and starting to break down. Remove from the heat and fish out the vanilla pod and star anise. Purée in a blender.
Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer, removing any remaining stringy bits of rhubarb. Transfer to a jug and stir in the lemon juice and vodka, if using. Cover and put in the fridge until fully chilled before churning in an ice cream machine, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Scrape the sorbet into an airtight container and freeze for at least 3 hrs before serving. Will keep, frozen, for up to 1 month.
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