Rhubarb? Really?

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Have you ever tried rhubarb? Most of us would be forced to say no. And while it may not have risen to popularity the way that kale has it certainly has many health benefits. In most parts rhubarb and strawberries are ready during a similar season and are often used together in recipes (which might be an easier way to get your family on board). Rhubarb looks a lot like celery but is generally pink in color, they have large leaves that toxic in very large amounts. This is one green you want to stay away from. Rhubarb will grow in most warm climates and is a perennial so it is left in the ground to produce for 10-15 years.

Some ways that rhubarb can boost your health are;

     rhubarb is loaded with antioxidants, like lycopene, these antioxidants assist in fighting disease.

     rhubarb stalks are a good source of fiber, often know as an excellent

resource food for digestion

      rhubarb contains vitamin K, the essential vitamin assisting with blood

clotting, protecting your bones and fighting off cancer

      rhubarb improves your heart health by assisting in the lowering of your

cholesterol

      rhubarb improves your immune system because it is a good source of

vitamin C, calcium, potassium and magnesium.

Try your hand at using rhubarb by giving these recipes a try. If you want to mix with a delicious fresh strawberry now is the time, our strawberries are ripe and ready for picking!

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp with Crumb Topping

For Fruit:
1 1/2 pounds rhubarb, leaves trimmed, stalks only, cut into 3/4-inch pieces (About. 3 cups)
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons of flour
1 teaspoon of lemon zest, freshly grated

For Topping:
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
Pinch salt
2/3 cup chopped walnuts

In a medium bowl, combine rhubarb, strawberries, sugar and lemon zest. Transfer to a buttered 8-inch baking dish.

For topping, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon and walnuts, pour in melted butter and toss to combine, tumble over fruit mixture. Bake until fruit is bubbling and topping is browned.

Serve warm with softly whipped cream.

 

Rhubarb Custard Bars

(believe it or not only 131 calories per serving)

Crust:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

9 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces

Cooking spray  

Filling:

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups 1% low-fat milk

3 large eggs

5 cups (1/2-inch) sliced fresh or frozen rhubarb (unthawed)

Topping:

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup (4 ounces) block-style fat-free cream cheese  

1/2 cup (4 ounces) block-style 1/3-less-fat cream cheese  

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed

Mint sprigs (optional)

 

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Press mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

 

To prepare filling, Combine flour and sugar in a large bowl; add milk and eggs, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Stir in rhubarb. Pour rhubarb mixture over crust. Bake at 350° for 40 minutes or until set. Cool to room temperature.

To prepare topping, place 1/2 cup sugar, cheeses, and vanilla in a bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Gently fold in whipped topping; spread evenly over baked custard. Cover and chill at least 1 hour. Garnish with mint sprigs, if desired.

 

 

Rhubarb – Be Cued Beef Ribs

4 lb. Lean, meaty beef short ribs
1/2 c Water
1/2 tsp. Seasoned salt
1 c Sliced rhubarb
1 Envelope onion soup mix (1 1/2 oz.)
1/3 c Honey
1/3 c Chili sauce
3/4 c Rose wine
1/3 c Water
1/2 tsp. Basil
1/8 tsp. Pepper
Red onion and Greens

Place ribs in 9 X 13″ pan. Add 1/2 cup water. Sprinkle with seasoned salt. Cover with foil. Bake @ 350 degrees for two hours. Meanwhile, combine remaining ingredients except garnish in a sauce pan. Simmer 1/2 hour. Pour over ribs. Bake another 1/2 hour uncovered. Baste several times. Place on serving platter.  Garnish. Serves 6.

Rhubarb Pecan Muffins

2 cups Flour 
1 1/2 teaspoons Baking powder 
1 teaspoon Salt 
1 large Egg 
2 teaspoons Orange peel -- grated 
1 1/4 cups Rhubarb (fresh) -- finely chopped 
3/4 cup Sugar 
1/2 teaspoon Baking soda 
3/4 cup Pecans -- chopped 
1/4 cup Vegetable oil 3/4 cup Orange juice 

Combine all dry ingredients. Beat egg and oil; add orange juice. Add to flour mixture. Add rhubarb.

Pour into 12 greased muffin tins. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Written By

Photo of Tammy Kelly, Ed. DTammy Kelly, Ed. DCounty Extension Director (252) 527-2191 tammy_kelly@ncsu.eduLenoir County, North Carolina
Updated on Apr 23, 2013
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