One of my personal all time favorites is Rhubarb. I love the tart taste, the beautiful color and the amazing diversity of it. As kids we used to just cut a stalk, peel it with our fingers and either dip it into a little sugar or just eat it by itself. The peeling part was half the fun for us, as it’s very stringy and easy to peel. Typically you can find Rhubarb from about February to late May in Northern parts of our globe, as opposed to the Southern parts when you’ll find it most readily available during the October/November time frame. Because it’s grown in hothouses, you can typically purchase it all year, but it will be more expensive.
Rhubarb grows easily and makes a pretty addition to your garden, but beware that the leaves are toxic and cannot be consumed unlike those of Kohlrabi, Kale, Beets, etc. Most people are surprised to find out that this amazing super-food is actually a vegetable, because it is mostly used in baking, such as pies, muffins, etc. It is fantastic when paired with pork in a chutney, or perhaps as part of a stir-fry or as a delicious soup. There are some great recipes out here if you’re unfamiliar with it or just want to rediscover it.
It has large fleshy leaves and beautiful hot pinkish red stalks. Once the stalks are peeled a lighter greenish pink is revealed, which when cooked turns into a mouth-watering blush color.
This veggie packs a bunch of goodness and is packed with nutrition. Back in the day, about 2700 BC that is, it is said to have been grown for its medicinal qualities and it still continues to be used for folk healing with its most common use being that of a highly effective laxative. Rhubarb helps with digestion, is excellent in helping the intestine regulate the absorption of fats, and is loaded with red carotenoids. It may have benefits of cutting some cancer risks, aid in blood circulation, help minimize hot flashes, helps reduce high cholesterol, and on it goes.
Well, because this veggie is not that well-known, it is currently in season, and it is getting warmer out – 97 here in Scottsdale today :-), I thought it would be nice to start you off with a childhood favorite of mine: Rhubarb Kompotte.
It is served chilled and each serving is about 6 oz. Feel free to have it as a snack, dessert, or over some Greek Yogurt for breakfast…Yummm! This is super refreshing and light. Since I like the tart taste of Rhubarb, I do not drown it in sweeteners. We don’t like very sweet things to start with. Too much sweetener takes away from the actual taste of the fruit or in this case veggie.
Here are the ingredients that you’ll need:
I used a whole bunch, because we love it, but you can easily adjust the amount of Rhubarb to your liking.
- 9 large Rhubarb stalks
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 14 whole cloves (about a tsp)
- 1/4 of a lemon’s peel
- 2 tbsp raw honey
- water enough to cover all the Rhubarb
You will need a soup pot. Add all sliced Rhubarb, cloves, lemon peel, cinnamon stick and 2 tbsp of raw honey, and cover with water just above the Rhubarb and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, cover, and turn off. Let it stand for 5 minutes, uncover and let cool for 15 minutes. Then transfer into refrigerator for chilling. Serve as suggested above anytime.