Two days ago we talked about a somewhat exotic crop in Spain that, however, is widely consumed in central and eastern Europe. Rhubarb . One of the things that happens to us when we grow a product that we do not normally use in our diet is that we do not know what to do with it. We propose a couple of uses.
DID YOU GROW THE RHUBARB? MAKE YOUR OWN AMAZING JAMS
Today we leave a little of the usual topics of crops, plants and garden tips to go in other directions. The culinary ones. The reason; not knowing what to do with the rhubarb we talked about the other day. It is a product of the garden that does not appear in Spanish recipes and that is why we want to give you some examples.
WHAT DOES RHUBARB TASTE LIKE?
It is a question that seems silly but it is not so silly. Is it a vegetable? In theory yes. However, the US many years ago classified it as a fruit. This classification ambiguity is due more to its taste and uses than to a purely morphological classification. It is clear that what we eat are the stems of the leaves and that we all know is not a fruit. Its flavor is somewhat peculiar, acid and astringent.
Due to this, it has been widely used in confectionery and sweet recipes. The addition of sugar to the rhubarb compensates for the acidity. This compensation of acidity with sugar is found in many recipes, both sweet and savory. The first that comes to mind is to reduce the acidity of the fried tomato by adding a little sugar. In the case of rhubarb it is the same.
WHAT CAN BE DONE WITH RHUBARB?
In recent years, innovation trends in the world of jams and marmalades have been “in crescendo”, being able to have onion, pepper, wine jams and a multitude of possible combinations. That is why, when we talked about the cultivation of rhubarb the other day, we thought what could be done in Spain with this curious stem. It occurred to me to call a friend, Pilar, who, having lived half her life in Germany, surely knew something. Of course she knew it and both she and I want to share the recipes with all the Agromatics. So there goes the rhubarb jam and the rhubarb jam with pear. Take note!
- 1 kg of rhubarb
- 800 gr of white sugar or 1 kg of cane sugar (sweetens less)
- water in necessary quantity (between ½ and 1 liter)
- 1 glass of good quality gin or cognac
- juice of one lemon
Thoroughly clean the rhubarb stems (scrape them as they are very fibrous) and cut them into small pieces, the leaves are not used (they are considered toxic due to their high oxalic acid content). Cook them in boiling water for about 5 minutes.
Pour the sugar, add the lemon juice and bring to a high heat, always stirring until the sweet takes consistency.
The point of jam is achieved by viewing the bottom of the pan, you can also do the test of the plate.
Be careful to cover your arms, as it is a mixture that jumps a lot (like quince).
Add the liquor and pack when the sweet is still hot in sterilized jars.
RHUBARB AND PEAR JAM
This is a variant that Spanish palates tend to like. The taste of pear softens the taste of rhubarb, which for those who are not used to it is usually somewhat strong. The preparation is exactly the same as the previous recipe but varying and playing with the rhubarb / pear proportions according to taste.
- 700 gr rhubarb / 300 gr pears
- 500 gr rhubarb / 500 gr pears
As rhubarb is quite acidic, the more pears we use, the sweeter and smoother the flavor of this jam will be.
It is advisable to test the recipe as it is prepared and to vary the amounts of its ingredients to taste. The sugar, the liquor (I prefer the brandy), the amount of rhubarb and / or pear.
For those risky with flavor, we recommend adding a clove seed.
One of the most famous rhubarb recipes is also rhubarb and strawberry jam whose different recipes you can find by browsing a bit.
We await your comments and from Gardenprue we want to thank Pilar a thousand times.