Tag Archives: rhubarb

Things to do with rhubarb: take one.

13 Sep

Remember the surprise rhubarb? Here’s what I did with the first bunch I picked.

Soon after discovering my tart friend I twisted off some of the outer stalks for experimentation.

stalks of freshly picked rhubarb

I guess I need a bigger container.

Our kitchen wasn’t even completely unpacked at this point, so I kept my first foray very simple: rhubarb syrup.

Step one: Chop ‘em up and put them on to boil with water and sugar for about 15 minutes. If I recall correctly I used equal parts water and sugar, but I don’t remember how much in total, and I didn’t measure how much rhubarb I had. I guess it turned out to be a very unscientific experiment, my high school chemistry teacher would not be impressed by my (lack of) quantitative rigor.

Rhubarb boiling in equal parts sugar and water.

Rhubarb boiling in (approximately) equal parts sugar and water.

Step two: Cool slightly and strain. I used a strainer basket lined with cheesecloth and then squeezed out every last bit of liquid. The squeezing part is why you need to let your syrup cool. If you’re not planning on manhandling a heated sack of vegetable pulp, you can strain right away.

Stewed rhubarb strained and squeezed through cheesecloth.

Freshly squeezed.

Step three: Pour into clean containers.

bottles of rhubarb syrup cooling on a window sill

Cooling off on the window sill.

This should be kept refrigerated. I’m not sure how long it will keep; I finished using it quickly. I used rhubarb syrup to top off ginger ale and plain seltzer for refreshers. I mixed it into various vodka, gin and rum concoctions. I even added some to prosecco for a rosy toast. There may be food applications for rhubarb syrup, but I never got that far… drinkin’ use only.

Surprise rhubarb!

1 Jun
hidden rhubarb

In the game of homeownership surprise rhubarb is way better than surprise asbestos.

M’s mom was on the deck scoping out our plants and said, “Hey! You’ve got rhubarb!”

Me: “I do?!”

Surprise! Turns out there are two big plants tucked along the side of the deck, hidden behind lilies and rhododendron. I’m not sure why it was planted there, it’s a bit of a shady spot, and getting to it requires walking through other plants. I’d like to try to make something with it, though, so I’ll just step gingerly. The kitchen isn’t completely settled yet, so it’s probably best to stay simple. Maybe rhubarb liqueur, or a rhubarb syrup? Now, where did I unpack the heavy-bottomed pot?…