Wednesday, June 1, 2011


For centuries rhubarb was ground into a powder and used medicinally in Europe; and it wasn't until the late 1700's that people started using it in desserts.  Although we typically eat rhubarb in desserts, it is a true vegetable.  When cooking rhubarb, never use aluminum or cast iron cookware since the chemicals in rhubarb will react with the metal. 

Now is the time of the year to harvest and/or to buy rhubarb.  With two plants to harvest from, I was looking for a recipe that called for alot of rhubarb.  This recipe not only uses alot of rhubarb, it is relatively low carb, easy and delicious.

I "garnished" this with a drizzle of thick whipping cream and liked how it cut the tartness somewhat.
*  8 cups (about 2 lbs.) of roughly chopped rhubarb
*  6 cups water
*  1 cup sugar
*  1-1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
*  1 cinnamon stick*
*  1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
*  1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
*  1 quart fresh strawberries, washed & hulled
Preheat oven to 400º.  Combine first six ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and cook until rhubarb is very tender, about 20 minutes.  Meanwhile, place whole strawberries on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Bake until strawberries begin to soften, about 12-15 minutes.  Add strawberries to soup and blend all with a stick blender.  Chill immediately; add lemon juice when cooled. 
*     Cinnamon stick has a more intense flavor and aroma than ground cinnamon.

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