Rhubarb is one of those ingredients that no one is ever quite sure what to do with. You can make a pie or a crumble but for anyone who grows their own rhubarb that leaves a huge amount lurking in the freezer unless you are looking to expand your waistline! So after being asked by a number of people for some ideas I thought I would share them with you.
Rhubarb is packed with antioxidants and contains a healthy dose of fibre to fill you up. It contains vitamin K which keeps your blood clotting and protects your bones. It can be tart and in years gone by children would be given a stick of rhubarb with a pot of sugar to dip it in to sweeten the tartness. The challenge in finding recipes is avoiding those that are full of sugar. As you all know I am an avid advocate for limiting intake of added sugar and processed foods and run 2 plans to help you to ‘Take Control of Sugar’ What I have tried to do here is to find the middle ground. Some of the recipes do contain sugar but where possible I have used maple syrup instead or reduced quantities. Please let me know what you think of these and add any recipes of your own too.
Carrot & Rhubarb Soup
Toss 1kg of peeled and chopped carrots in olive oil with 100g diced rhubarb. Add 4 cloves and 4 black peppercorns. Spread on a baking sheet and cook at 175 C for 30 minutes. Remove and put in a stock pot. Add 1 tsp Tumeric and 1 litre of vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Blend until completely smooth. Serve with Sourdough bread.
Persian Stew with Rhubarb & Mint
Heat oil in a pan and then brown 1lb of meat (lamb, beef or chicken thighs). Remove and then fry 1 large diced onion with 1 finely chopped stick of celery for 5 minutes. Then add the meat, 2 cloves of finely chopped garlic, 2 tbsp. butter, 1/2 tsp turmeric, zest of 1/2 lemon, 11/2 tsp salt and 25g chopped fresh mint. Cook for 5 minutes and then add 1/2 tsp dried mint and 750 ml stock. Cover and simmer for an hour. Add 750g Rhubarb cut into 2 inch pieces on the diagonal and 1/2 tsp saffron threads (grind in mortar and dissolve in 2-3 tsp hot water). Taste and add lemon juice if required. Serve with rice or mashed roast vegetables.
In a pan heat 250ml cider vinegar with 100g golden caster sugar until it is dissolved. Add 300g chopped rhubarb, 4 chopped medjool dates, 1 tsp grated ginger and 1 cardomom pod. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the rhubarb has broken down and the liquid has reduced to a thick chutney. Serve with a vegetable curry, with cheese or in a sandwich with ham.
Rhubarb & Banana Bread
Preheat oven to 175 C and oil a loaf tin. Mix 120g spelt flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp all spice and set aside. Beat 2 large eggs for 30 seconds and then mix in 1 tsp vanilla extract, 2 medium ripe mashed bananas and 170g honey or maple syrup until well combined. Slowly add in the flour mixture and then fold in 1 large stalk of finely chopped rhubarb. Pour into the loaf tin and bake for 50-55 minutes.
Strawberry & Rhubarb Drop Scones
Preheat oven to 200 C. In a large bowl whisk together 300g flour, 100g golden caster sugar, 1 tbsp. baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt. Add 75g butter and rub in. Add 200g diced mixed rhubarb & strawberries. In a small bowl whisk 1 egg with 1 egg yolk and 240ml buttermilk. Then add to the mixt and stir until combined. Drop large spoonfuls on to a large baking sheet lined with paper. Bake for 20 minutes until they are golden and the edges start to brown.
Rhubarb & Oat Puffs
Preheat oven to 200 C. In a bowl toss 5 sticks of chopped rhubarb (3cm pieces) with 1 tsp cinnamon, 3 tbsp plain flour and 2 tbsp sugar. Line a baking tray with paper and roll out a 250g block of Puff Pastry. Cut into quarters and place on the baking sheet. Rub together 2 tbsp flour with 3 tbsp butter and 50g rolled oats. Divide the rhubarb between the quarters leaving a 1cm rim. Sprinkle oat mixture on the top. Fold over and pinch each corner to keep the filling in. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
Put 750g chopped Rhubarb, zest and juice of a large orange, 100g golden caster sugar, 2 tbsp water and 2 pieces of finelt chopped stem ginger in a pan. Bring to the boil and then simmer until it is soft and cooked but still holding its shape. You can serve with granola and vanilla yoghurt for breakfast or add it to your porridge. You could use it in a pie or top with an oat crumble. The choice is yours!
I hope you find these recipes useful. Don’t forget to let me know if you try any of them or if you have others to add to the collection. I am off to get some rhubarb from the garden and make some soup.