Let’s hear it for… Rhubarb!
Bright, sharp and delicious, rhubarb is a well-loved ingredient for classic comfort puddings like crumble, but how much do you know about this proudly pink stem? Here’s Froothie’s guide!
Forced rhubarb makes an appearance in January until March, whereas the field-grown rhubarb comes along from April until September. When you’re buying it, look for stalks that are firm and crisp and that the leaves look fresh and not wilted.
Once you get it home, store rhubarb unwashed in the fridge for up to a week. Or you could freeze it raw or cooked to use another time.
Five Fun Rhubarb Facts
1. Fruity vegetable: Is rhubarb a fruit or a vegetable? Well strictly speaking it’s a vegetable stalk of a large perennial herb that’s actually related to sorrel. However if you live stateside, it’s classed as a fruit. Confusing!
2. Historic roots: It was grown in China for medicinal purposes thousands of years ago – it became popular as food by the time the 19th century rolled around and it was brought to Europe by explorer Marco Polo.
3. In the pink: The redder the stalk, the sweeter the flavour.
4. Be careful! Their leaves are poisonous so don’t eat them no matter how tempting and fresh they look.
5. The ‘rhubarb triangle’: It might sound mysterious but it actually refers to an area in Yorkshire around Wakefield, Morley and Rothwell where there are loads of forcing sheds used to grow the bright pink tender forced rhubarb. It’s grown in the dark and harvested by candlelight.
Rhubarb is bursting with following goodies:
- Vitamin K – great for bone health and also beneficial in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease
- Vitamin C – enhances your immune system and helps lower blood pressure
- Vitamin A – the redder the stalk the higher the content of Vitamin A which is a powerful natural antioxidant
- Dietary Fibre – good for your digestion
If you’re keen to experiment with rhubarb in the kitchen, here are some ingredients that buddy up really well with this pink gem for a slice of culinary heaven:
Top 5 Rhubarb Recipes
Here’s a round-up of my five favourite rhubarb recipes from the Froothie Ambassadors. From tempting juices to gorgeous desserts, make the most of this pretty ingredient.
1. This Strawberry and Rhubarb Punch from Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary is a quick and delicious drink served over ice with chopped fresh mint – add some white wine to get the party started.
2. We love the chevron pattern on these Strawberry and Rhubarb Tartlets with a chickpea crust from Eat Myyy Thoughts – perfect served up with some dairy free custard.
3. Desserts in glasses are just so pleasing. Just check out this delectable Vegan Ginger Cookies in a Rhubarb Parfait from Thinly Spread
4. Choclette from Tin and Thyme has been really clever and made dried rose petals in her Froothie Optimum P200 Dehydrator to create this special Rhubarb and Rose Compote with Rose Cream
5. How about this Rhubarb Awakening from Kellie’s Food To Glow? It’s a refreshing mix of rhubarb, ginger root and apples.
Katie Bryson is a Freelance Food Writer who blogs at Feeding Boys where she shares recipes and tips for families with big appetites and vegetarian tendencies.