Last night my fantastic neighbor introduced herself to Thad as he was grilling out back. She is pretty old and must have not remembered meeting us before, but since she thought we just moved in (we moved last July), she brought over some homemade rhubarb cherry jam. Yummy!! She is super sweet and thoughtful. She also mentioned that she has tons of rhubarb growing in her backyard and we can go and pick our own anytime we want. I was super excited about this and also realized that I have never picked my own rhubarb. I think the only time I have ever tasted rhubarb is my grandmothers rhubarb sauce back in the day, or strawberry/rhubarb pie from Perkins. Oh, I can not wait for the day I can experience my own garden. :)
I came across a website a while back that tells you what produce is in season each month and gives you recipes to choose from with that food in it. Eat the Seasons. -go check it out! It has been very helpful to look at before I go to the store. Why should we eat what is more local and in season?...well it's always good to support our local economy, but it also tastes better, fresher, and is more nutritious. Specifically rhubarb is in season april through july and here is some fun info I found coming pretty much straight from Nick, an editor from the website...kind of fun to know the facts. :)
"The outlandishly colored vegetable that thinks it's a fruit. Rhubarb makes deliciously comforting puddings but its sharpness works extremely well with meat and oily fish dishes (the duck recipe below is a resounding success).Forced rhubarb (grown in the dark) has yellowish leaves. The field-grown variety has greener leaves and is less tender but often more flavorful.HISTORYRhubarb was used as a medicine in ancient China. It was brought to Europe by Marco Polo and has been eaten as a food since the eighteenth century.BIOLOGYRhubarb is a member of the family Polygonaceae and is related to sorrel. It grows best in cool climates and the effect of forcing was discovered by accident at the Chelsea Physic Garden early in the 19th century.NUTRITIONRhubarb is a good source of fiber and contains moderate levels of vitamin C and calcium. Studies have linked the fiber from rhubarb in the diet with reduced cholesterol levels.TIPSBUYING:Choose crisp, firm, plump stalks with good color.STORING:Kept in the fridge, fresh rhubarb will stay in reasonable condition for 1-2 weeks. Raw and cooked rhubarb freeze well.PREPARING:Wash and trim both ends of the stalks, and discard the poisonous leaves. Rhubarb, in particular the later field-grown variety, is very tart and requires considerable sweetening. As with other relatively acidic foods it is recommended that it is not cooked using aluminum pots."
Local Harvest is a great website that helps you search for local produce in season...or click here for another site and information about farmers markets near you. Hope you all had a super weekend...now I must go enjoy some toast with rhubarb/cherry jam. :)