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Tips for Using Rhubarb

By Fredrica Syren:

Here in Sweden, rhubarb is one of the first “fruits” to grow in the summer. I grew up with rhubarb, and during the season my friends and I would break off a piece and eat it — just like that. Rhubarb is actually a vegetable related to sorrel, dock and buckwheat, but is treated like a fruit. It has a very thick, stringy stalk and a very tart flavor. The giant leaves contain oxalic acid, which is a toxin, so they should not be eaten. Rhubarb is used mostly in baking pies or cobblers, but it’s very versatile and can work really well in savory dishes as well.Rabarber

To prepare rhubarb, first wash it and then remove the stringy ribs by stripping them off with a small, sharp knife. Rhubarb wilts very quickly, so wrap the stalks in a damp towel and place in an open container in the refrigerator for best results.

Here are some of my favorite rhubarb recipes:

Rhubarb and Strawberry Tart

For me, a piece of rhubarb tart is the perfect dessert. In my world, rhubarb and strawberry marries very well.Strawberry & rhubarb tart

Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cup gluten free all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2-3 Tbsp. ice cold water
  1. Preheat oven to F400.
  2. Use fingers or a fork to mix flour, sugar, salt and butter to crumbly dough.
  3. Add water 1 Tbsp. at the time and work until you have shiny dough that’s not too sticky.
  4. Place dough between two pieces of parchment paper, and use a rolling pin to roll out the dough to a thin sheet for the piecrust.
  5. Place the crust in a pie mold and cut off leftover edges.
  6. Prick bottom with fork a couple of times.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Let the crust cool.

Filling:

  • 1 cup strawberries, chopped
  • 1 cup rhubarb, chopped
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped out
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
  1. Place everything except the corn starch in a pan and bring to a boil on medium heat.
  1. Cook under lid for about 5 minutes or until fruit is soft.
  2. Remove from heat.
  3. Mix cornstarch with 1 Tbsp. water until dissolved.
  4. Add to fruit and stir until it thickens.
  5. Let filling cool for 10 minutes.
  6. Pour filling into piecrust.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes at F400.
  8. Serve warm with cream or ice cream.

Rhubarb Chutney:

This is so easy to make and the result is wonderful. It tastes great with anything BBQ — in our case tofu, seitan and Portobello mushrooms.Rhubarb chutney

I small jar of Rhubarb chutney

  • 2 cup rhubarb, peeled and cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp. red chili, minced
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 Tbsp. raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. corn or potato starch
  1. Place rhubarb, agave, ginger, red chili, raisins, vinegar and water in a pot, and bring to a boil on high heat.
  2. Reduce heat to low heat and let simmer for about 20 minutes.
  3. Blend starch with 1 Tbsp. water and allow to completely dissolve.
  4. Add to chutney and bring to a boil. Boil for one minute while stirring.
  5. Remove from heat and let cool until warm to the touch before placing into a clean glass jar. It will stay fresh in the fridge for a couple of weeks.

Quick Pickled Rhubarb—I never thought about pickling rhubarb, but it’s so incredibly good in salads and with BBQ as an extra kick of flavors. Click on link to find recipe:)

What re your favorite rhubarb recipe?

About Green Mom

Fredrica Syren, the author and founder of Green-Mom.com, was born in Sweden. Her mother was a classically trained chef who introduced her to many eclectic flavors and skills at a young age. Her mom’s passion for the outdoors and gardening planted the seed for her own love of nature and healthy eating. She received a degree in journalism and has worked as a print, Internet and broadcasting journalist for many years with big businesses within Europe and the United States. After her mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer and she with pre-cancer, Fredrica changed her career to become a full time yoga teacher and activist. A longtime world traveler, foodie and career woman, she was exposed to many facets of life, but nothing inspired her more than becoming a mom. After her first-born, Fredrica began a food blog focusing on local, seasonal, organic & vegetarian dishes. Years of food blogging developed into the cookbook Yummy in My Tummy, Healthy Cooking for the Whole Family. Upon the arrival of her second child, Fredrica founded Green-Mom.com. Her vision was to establish a site providing insight about gardening, home and personal care, baby & child, and of course food & nutrition. Green-Mom.com hosts many talented writers shedding light on ways to incorporate eco-friendly and nutritious practices for busy families. She is an advocate for organic, local and sustainable businesses. Fredrica hopes to inspire social change through her lifestyle, passion and business. Fredrica lives with her husband James Harker-Syren and their three children in San Diego, CA.

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