All you need to know about … Rhubarb


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Rhubarb is a great source of essential vitamins while also being an excellent source of dietary fibre. Rhubarb can be used a number of ways; it can be baked in tarts, mixed into salads or made into chutneys and relishes. There isn’t much rhubarb can’t do, so keep reading for our complete guide!

What is rhubarb?
Rhubarb was originally used for medicinal purposes in China for thousands of years, the roots were used in traditional Chinese medicine as a laxative and natural relaxant. It wasn’t until the 1700s that it was being used in recipes by the English, and in the 1800s it was brought to America. Rhubarb is scientifically classified as a vegetable, but is sold and eaten as a fruit. Rhubarb looks like a red celery with thick leaves on top. Typically only the red segments of the stalks are used for cooking, as they carry the flavor. The leaves on top carry high levels of oxalic acid, which is a poisonous chemical, so these should be removed before cooking.

When is rhubarb in season?
Rhubarb is available most of the year, with the season peaking in late spring to early summer; this is when you’ll find thicker and more flavorsome stalks. In winter months rhubarb is still abundant, but you’ll find the stalks are usually thinner, less flavorsome and tend to wilt quicker.

How do I pick the best quality rhubarb?
Focus on the stalks, looking for stalks that are firm, crisp, deep red in colour and void of any brown and soft segments. If the leaves haven’t been trimmed off, look for ones that are still fresh and attached to the head of the stalk.

Is rhubarb good for you?

  • Rhubarb is an excellent source of many essential vitamins which your body needs on a daily basis. Rhubarb is rich in vitamin A which is beneficial for maintaining your immune system, vitamin C which is beneficial for the repair and growth of body tissue, and vitamin K which helps your blood to clot.
  • Rhubarb is a source of dietary fibre and beneficial for gut health.
  • Rhubarb is low in Kilojoules.

How do I store rhubarb?
Make sure to remove the leaves and segment the stalks. Keep rhubarb stalks in an airtight container and place in the vegetable crisper of your fridge for up to a week.

How can I cook with rhubarb?
Rhubarb can be used in a variety of recipes and is delicious in pies, tarts, salads, cakes, muffins, chutneys, and even on toast.

For the ultimate rhubarb tart recipe, make sure to click here. This show-stopping tart takes time to make but the results are oh so worth it! Ideal for a weekend baking project that’s sure to impress family and friends.

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