Rhubarb

 

 

One of my favourite harbingers of spring.

One of my favourite harbingers of spring.

A little backgrounder or is it a little backyarder?

As one of the official harbingers of spring, rhubarb is on my list of “I’m so excited to be eating what’s growing in my backyard ” Technically its growing in my neighbour’s backyard……..but, thankfully,  they share it with me. Luckily for everyone concerned this has obliterated the stealth missions in the middle of the night armed with a flashlight.  

 Super tart and bordering on sour you need a lot of sweetness to make the stalks edible, but never ever try to eat the leaves – they’re toxic.

 Different varieties

Field versus hot house. The stalks of field rhubarb vary from shades of green to deep ruby red depending on the variety, hot house tends to be more pink.

 

How to pick and store

As with all vegetables or fruits that have a stalk look for crisp, firm ones. And like all super models perky counts – look for perky leaves to ensure freshness.

To store wrap the stalks in damp paper towels and place in a plastic bag for up to one week in the fridge. Or chop into 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces and freeze for up to one year.

 

 

Nutrition Info

Rhubarb boasts a host of beneficial nutrients, its high in fibre, it also contains vitamin C plus it contains lutein and zeaxanthin for healthy eyes.

 

Weird tip

Have any dingy looking stainless steel pots? According to the Rhubarb Compendium you can use rhubarb to clean them, no elbow grease required. Just boil up some chopped rhubarb with water in a pan and it will come clean. They suggest: An application of rhubarb over the afflicted area will bring back the shine in next to no time. Environmentally friendly too!

 

Recipe

Rhubarb with Ginger and Honey

As a fan of trying to reduce the amount of sugar we have in our diets this version of stewed rhubarb is tart with a big hint of ginger.  

If you want a sweeter version increase the honey to 1 cup (250 mL).

 

7 cups (1.75 L) chopped rhubarb

7 cups of chopped field rhubarb (okay neighbour's backyard rhubarb)

7 cups of chopped field rhubarb (okay neighbour’s backyard rhubarb)

 

½ cup (125 mL) chopped dried ginger

1/2 cup of chopped dried ginger

1/2 cup of chopped dried ginger measured in a dry measuring cup

½ cup (125 mL) liquid local honey

1/2 cup liquid local honey

1/2 cup liquid local honey, measure in a glass measuring cup

 

Directions:

 

  1. Place the rhubarb, ginger and honey into a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir together until the honey melts and the rhubarb starts to soften.
7 cups of chopped field rhubarb (okay neighbour's backyard rhubarb)

7 cups of chopped field rhubarb (okay neighbour’s backyard rhubarb)

  1. Bring to the boil, reduce to simmer and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the rhubarb is very tender and has thickened, about 10-15 minutes.(My version is thicker than most stewed rhubarbs – if it is watery it will make the Rhubarb Squares -see recipe below – soggy)
At 10 minutes

At 10 minutes

  1. Pour into two-2 cup (500 mL) glass jars and screw on the lid. Cool and store in the fridge for up to 6 days or you can freeze it in freezer safe containers for up to 6 months.
sorry, bad lighting....

sorry, bad lighting….

  1. Use in the recipe for Rhubarb Squares (see below) or serve it over 0% MF Greek style yogurt.

 

Makes – approx. 4 cups (1 L) to make 8 – ½ cup (125 mL) servings

Nutrient breakdown per ½ cup (125 mL) = 110 calories, 0 g fat,  6 mg sodium, 41 g carbs, 1.5 g fibre, 0.75 g protein

 


Rhubarb Squares

 

Rhubarb Square

Rhubarb Squares

 

My taste buds and I love the combination of sweet and tart which makes this one of my favourite spring desserts. Watch the portion size – this makes a wee dessert, remember size matters.

 

Tip: Make the Rhubarb with Ginger and Honey the night before.

 

1 cup (250 mL) whole wheat flour    

2 cups (500 mL) large oat flakes        

1 cup (250 mL) brown sugar  

2 tsp (10 mL) cinnamon        

½ cup + 1 tbsp (135 mL) canola oil

I used a cold pressed canola oil from Manitoba

I used a cold pressed canola oil from Manitoba

  1 ½ cups (375 mL) Rhubarb with Ginger and Honey  (see recipe above)         

 

 Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line an 8-inch (2-L) metal pan with parchment paper. 
  • In a medium bowl mix together the whole wheat flour, oat flakes, brown sugar and the cinnamon.
  • Pour in the oil and mix together with a fork until the flour mixture looks wet sand.
a wet sand look

mix together until it looks like wet sand

  • Pour half of this mixture into the prepared pan and pat down.
Patted down

Patted down

  • Pour in Rhubarb with Ginger and Honey and then spread evenly, leaving a tiny edge of bottom crust showing.
Slightly gross loking - but keep the edge of the bottom crust showing, it will help seal the top layer to the bottom.

Slightly gross looking – but keep the edge of the bottom crust showing, it will help seal the top layer to the bottom.

  •   Spoon over the rest of the flour mixture over top, even out and lightly press down.
  •     Bake for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely before cutting it into 16 pieces.

 

 Makes – 16 – 2 inches x 2 inches squares

Each square contains: 221 Calories, 8 g Total Fat, 0.75 g Sat Fat, 0 g Trans Fat, 2 mg Sodium, 30 g Carbs, 4 g Fibre, 4 g Protein.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Seasonal Recipes Tagged with: , , , ,
3 comments on “Rhubarb
  1. Iris Ivanoff says:

    I want to know how much sour cream goes into the sour cream rhubarb pie in todays Province paper. I would like to make it as it sounds very good. i do make the rhubarb honey ginger sauce just love it.

    iris ivanoff
    Ivanoff@telus.net

  2. Aleda says:

    In the Sunday Province there is a recipe for sour cream rhubarb pie but there is no amount of sour cream mentioned in the ingredients for the pie.
    I would like to know how much sour cream to use.
    Aleda Forseng

  3. Mairlyn says:

    It was 1 cup of sour cream, cant believe that was missing!
    Peace, love and fibre,
    Mairlyn

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