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David Ross

eG Cook-Off #66: Rhubarb

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David Ross;  here   you can rhubarb  as fruit the paté, we call them  jellies and there is dried rhubarb candy that is lovely too.


Cheese is you friend, Cheese will take care of you, Cheese will never betray you, But blue mold will kill me.

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What should I look for when selecting rhubarb? Color? Size? Weight for its size? Something else?


Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Thin stems are better then thick.

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Cheese is you friend, Cheese will take care of you, Cheese will never betray you, But blue mold will kill me.

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What should I look for when selecting rhubarb? Color? Size? Weight for its size? Something else?

 

Redder ones are "sweeter".

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Not always, depends on the  type of rhubarb.


Cheese is you friend, Cheese will take care of you, Cheese will never betray you, But blue mold will kill me.

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I would be very careful buying rhubarb this time of the year, as the weather heats up it gets tough and fibrous.

In season, look for firm, tender, bright-looking stalks....color isn't a reliable indicator of anything because it can vary greatly from cultivar to cultivar and even plant to plant.


~Martin :)

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The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it! 

 

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As it happens, it's only just started warming up here. I scored several packages of rhubarb at the grocery store earlier today (I missed the Farmers' Market); I got plenty to make sure I could participate. I'll post photos later so y'all can comment. The checkout clerk noted that he loves rhubarb just dipped in sugar; he eats it out of hand, like celery!

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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Just yesterday I got more wonderful rhubarb and from the looks of things, our season will continue.  The rhubarb I've been buying in the market is usually very thick stalks, but from the backyard garden the size of the stalks has been varying from pencil thin to nearly 1 1/2" thick.

 

Since I have so much rhubarb coming my way I'm going to vacuum seal and freeze it.  That will be a good test to see how the flavor holds up.  Today a friend told me she thought a rhubarb-cranberry sauce would be quite nice for the Thanksgiving turkey so that will be one of the dishes I'll try with the frozen rhubarb.

 

IMG_2044.JPG

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The best jam I have ever tasted:  Bluebarb Jam, from rhubarb and blueberries.


Ruth Dondanville aka "ruthcooks"

“Are you making a statement, or are you making dinner?” Mario Batali

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The best jam I have ever tasted:  Bluebarb Jam, from rhubarb and blueberries.

 

Ooh. Which means a blueberry-rhubarb cobbler might be on my agenda.


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The bounty of rhubarb season up here has delivered enough rhubarb chutney that we'll be dressing meats with the stuff all the way to Thanksgiving.  This recipe couldn't be easier--a lot of spices but the whole lot goes into the pot, stews down for about 30 minutes and voila, a nice batch of fragrant, spicy, sweet rhubarb chutney.  I forgot that I had a bottle of rose water, lest I would have added a few drops to enhance the floral notes of the rhubarb.  But now I have another idea--rhubarb/rose water ice cream.

 

The ingredients for the chutney-

IMG_1949.JPG

 

Served with a grilled Carlton Farms, (Oregon), pork chop, fresh asparagus and hash browns-

IMG_1999.JPG

 

The next platform for the rhubarb chutney will be a decadent slice of pork belly, http://forums.egullet.org/topic/147019-eg-cook-off-65-pork-belly/?p=1953722, based on a pork belly confit recipe from Thomas Keller.

 

My Rhubarb Chutney-

3 cups chopped fresh rhubarb

1/3 cup golden raisins

1/4 cup currants

1/2 cup diced red onion

1 tbsp. grated fresh ginger

1 tbsp. minced fresh garlic

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 tsp. ground cumin

1/8 tsp. cloves

1/8 tsp. cayenne or red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/8 tsp. ground allspice

Salt and black pepper

Optional-curry powder

Water

 

Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add all the ingredients and spices and stir to combine.  When the mixture begins to bubble, turn the heat down to low and let the chutney cook until the rhubarb breaks down.  Add water to thin the chutney if it is too thick.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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That chutney looks much nicer than the sauce I made tonight, David. I tried a rough approximation of this recipe: http://forums.egullet.org/topic/19949-rhubarb/?p=920007 with a pork loin roast. The "rough approximation" bit comes in because I didn't have any parma ham and I did decide to temper the lemon flavor of the rhubarb with the sweetness of dates. Overall the sauce was nice, but we both felt it was a bit too fruity for our tastes with the pork. (We aren't big fans of applesauce with pork, either.) We remedied the problem with a good grainy mustard. Overall the combination was good enough to experiment with again, but not necessarily a keeper to pursue obsessively. Meanwhile, the combination of rhubarb, dates and pork juice conspired to make a brown sauce that looked a lot like gravy, especially after I took an immersion blender to it. Your chutney is much prettier.

Revelations:

I was surprised at how readily the rhubarb collapsed during cooking. It seemed to turn almost transparent, not at all retaining its structure the way celery would.

I think today was my first time actually eating rhubarb out of hand. What a lovely surprise! Its sourness was much more akin to lemon than I'd anticipated! I can see why rhubarb could be substituted for lemony flavors to good effect: rhubarb and raspberry, rhubarb and blueberry, rhubarb on fish, perhaps? I liked it. I got a bit of that oxalic acid gritty feeling on my teeth (no, I wasn't eating the leaves) but I can easily see eating this stuff as a snack.


Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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There's not much cooking involved in it (and it's not a very sophisticated cocktail), but I did make the Rhubarb-Gin cocktail referenced in my earlier post. I'm not crazy about thyme, so used some fresh rosemary instead.

 

The rhubarb salt is lovely though it took a long time to dry. And, to be honest, it just tastes like salt - there's not much rhubarb flavour to it.  

 

IMGP2629.JPG

 

The finished cocktail is pretty, but again, not a lot of rhubarb flavour. Then again, the only rhubarb I could get was at the very end of the season so maybe fresher/younger would be tastier! 

 

IMGP2643.JPG

 

I still have a few stalks of rhubarb left and I'm toying with the idea of trying a rhubarb-cherrry sauce, but I suspect the cherries would overwhelm the aging rhubarb. I do have some cherries to use up though, so might just make it for that reason. Cherry, onion, rhubarb, balsamic vinegar. Maybe served with a pork tenderloin. 


Edited by FauxPas (log)
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Great looking chutney, David! There's a recipe in my mother' s collection for rhubarb chutney to accompany tourtière. I want to look it up after seeing yours.

I had my mum put some rhubarb into the freezer for me in early June. Local strawberries have come into the stores, so I defrosted some to make a strawberry- rhubarb pie for my husband. The pastry is Dorie Greenspan's recipe, and for the first time I had a food processor to make it in. I couldn't believe how easy it was compared to by hand. I have "hot hands", so my pastry is always hit or miss. The filling Is thickened with tapioca, which seemed bitty yesterday when we had it out of the oven, but was fantastic and thick today. No rhubarb juice flooding the pan, as in past pies I've done. I was quite pleased with the result. I bought some more lard today with the intention of practicing my pie- making skills further this summer.

image.jpg

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Pie crust is not my strength, but Dorie's recipe is generous enough that I'm not left trying to scavenge scraps to cover the tin. I find old- fashioned pie crust recipes use proportions for people who were already proficient in crust making. The water proportion was never enough to stick my crumbs together, and my crusts were always too dry to roll out. Dorie's recipe calls for quite a bit of water comparatively, but I didn't find this tough as a result. I did over-process some of the butter trying to break some bigger chunks down, but next time, I'll adjust by cutting down the butter before I throw it in. Dorie calls for shortening, but all of my pie- making relatives swear by lard for flavour.

As for the rhubarb, the filling had one cup of sugar to six cups of fruit, which made it pleasingly tart. Given the rhubarb was frozen, I was happy how thick the filling came out - rhubarb seems to make for extra runny pies.

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Apart from the ubiquitous rhubarb compote, which occurs very frequently on our table during spring time, I made some rhubarb-ginger marmalade earlier this year. It goes especially well on crepes, a combination that's an all time favorite with our children. I also made a rhubarb-strawberry sorbet, which was appropriately refreshing.

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If any one makes  rhubarb toffee, take pics please.


Cheese is you friend, Cheese will take care of you, Cheese will never betray you, But blue mold will kill me.

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Rhubarb is more of a spring thing here, and it looks like the season is already over. I love its acidic taste (due to the oxalic acid which is also in one of my other favorite vegetables, sorrel). I prefer the thinner pink stalks, they seem less stringy and more flavorful than the green ones, and they are just prettier.

 

Here are a couple of things I've made with rhubarb in the past. A classic rhubarb pie -this was 100% rhubarb. I personally don't care for mixing rhubarb with berries, I think it just dilutes its flavor.

 

6037356440_13af7a8128_z.jpg
 

 

Last year for Easter, I made compote that I served on top of a vanilla semi-freddo. The semi-freddo cut nicely the acidity of the rhubarb. This is a nice dessert for spring.

 

8608903136_2361280ff6_z.jpg
 

This was the rhubarb I used for the compote.

 

8603661661_f746e96908_z.jpg
 


Edited by FrogPrincesse (log)
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That chutney looks much nicer than the sauce I made tonight, David. I tried a rough approximation of this recipe: http://forums.egullet.org/topic/19949-rhubarb/?p=920007 with a pork loin roast. The "rough approximation" bit comes in because I didn't have any parma ham and I did decide to temper the lemon flavor of the rhubarb with the sweetness of dates. Overall the sauce was nice, but we both felt it was a bit too fruity for our tastes with the pork. (We aren't big fans of applesauce with pork, either.) We remedied the problem with a good grainy mustard. Overall the combination was good enough to experiment with again, but not necessarily a keeper to pursue obsessively. Meanwhile, the combination of rhubarb, dates and pork juice conspired to make a brown sauce that looked a lot like gravy, especially after I took an immersion blender to it. Your chutney is much prettier.

Revelations:

I was surprised at how readily the rhubarb collapsed during cooking. It seemed to turn almost transparent, not at all retaining its structure the way celery would.

I think today was my first time actually eating rhubarb out of hand. What a lovely surprise! Its sourness was much more akin to lemon than I'd anticipated! I can see why rhubarb could be substituted for lemony flavors to good effect: rhubarb and raspberry, rhubarb and blueberry, rhubarb on fish, perhaps? I liked it. I got a bit of that oxalic acid gritty feeling on my teeth (no, I wasn't eating the leaves) but I can easily see eating this stuff as a snack.

Rhubarb definitely cooks down quickly and loses it's crisp texture.  I try to make sure when I cook the chutney that some of the pieces don't totally turn to mush, or I add some of the chopped rhubarb during the last 10 minutes or so cooking.  I want it soft and cooked, but I also like the texture contrast with the few stronger pieces in the finished chutney.

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Rhubarb%20Tart%20July%2014th%2C%202014%2

 

Adapted my favourite rhubarb pie recipe to make this tart. Normally I don't cook the rhubarb before adding it to the pie, but this time I roasted the rhubarb in brown sugar and vanilla.

The tart was shaped freehand.

To hold the shape I took a long narrow stalk of rhubarb and sliced it lengthways and then placed the long strips of rhubarb along the inside edge of the pastry and then folded the edge of the pastry over the strip of rhubarb to form a rim. Added the filling and baked.

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Today was one of those late rush dinners around our house. I discovered that the leftover sauce from my pork loin last week was an excellent foil for the Mexican chorizo sausages and horseradish bratwursts that we pulled out of the freezer. The sauce looks just as muddy brown and unlovely as it did when I made it, but it has a tart fruitiness that played nicely off the spicy sausages. No wonder the chutneys do so well: they'd taste at least as good, and look much better! ;-)

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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