Inventory, 20 lbs : 0
This item was last sold on : 03/21/17
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Rhubarb is the edible stalk portion of the Rhubarb plant. Stringy and tough, the stalks range in colors of light pink to deep ruby red. The texture of Rhubarb is often compared to that of celery stalks, while the flavor is much more tart and requires sweetening to be palatable. Rhubarb is traditionally cultivated in two ways, field or hothouse grown. The field-grown Rhubarb has attractive dark red stalks and green leaves while the hothouse-grown Rhubarb produces pink or light red stalks with yellow leaves. Hothouse Rhubarb is milder in flavor and less stringy. The Rhubarb plant consists of a base, called a crown, that rests at soil level and roots down. From the soil line multiple stalks shoot out with brightly colored, edible stems that are tipped off with large, deep green leaves, leaving the plant with a rounded, bush type appearance. The roots and leaves SHOULD NOT BE EATEN as they are poisonous.
Hothouse Rhubarb's peak season is in the winter months. Field-grown Rhubarb season begins in the spring, comtinues through the summer months into fall. Frozen Rhubarb is also available.
Rhubarb, botanically known as Rheum rhabarbarum, was primarily used for medicinal purposes until the 1800's. There are over 100 different species of Rhubarb, most of which are hybrids, and some of which are strictly ornamental. Rhubarb has been used for medicinal purposes, including as a potent laxative, for thousands of years. The leaves of the Rhubarb plant are fatally toxic, although the exact compound behind the toxicity is unknown.
Rhubarb is rich in multiple B-complex vitamins, such as folates, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6, thiamin, and pantothenic acid. Rhubarb stalks also provide fair amounts of vitamin K which has a potential role in bone health as well as limiting neuronal damage in the brain, which has established vitamin K as a role in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.
Rhubarb may be prepared as a vegetable but is more often featured in sweet recipes. Slice Rhubarb as you would celery and cook down with sugar into a chutney, or with strawberries into compote or jam. Toss sliced Rhubarb with apples or strawberries and sugar, flour and spices, then bake into pie or a crisp- topped with butter, flour, sugar and oats. Combine cooked, sweetened Rhubarb with orange zest and mix into softened butter for a compound spread. Quick-pickle Rhubarb slices in vinegar, sugar and salt and add to a salad with goat cheese and white asparagus. Rhubarb will keep in cool, dry storage for 2-3 weeks.
Rhubarb has been used since 2700 BC in Chinese culture for trade and medicinal purposes. Emperor Wu of the Liang dynasty is said to have used Rhubarb to cure his fever. In 1815 it was inadvertently discovered at the Chelsea Physic Garden that 'forcing' rhubarb, or keeping it in the dark, would cause the plant to produce rapidly elongated leaves and stalks as well as suppress chlorophyll production, creating a sweeter stalk.
Although technically a vegetable, in 1947 the United States Customs Court in Buffalo, New York, ruled Rhubarb to be a fruit because it is most commonly used in sweet applications. This cost-effective act allowed imported rhubarb to pay a smaller duty than if it was a vegetable. Rhubarb was first used as a food plant in 1778 in Europe and is recorded to have been first grown in the united States in Maine between 1790-1800.
Restaurants currently purchasing this product as an ingredient for their menu.
|Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center||National City CA||619-434-4281|
|Decoy Dockside Restaurant||San Marcos CA||760-653-3230|
|Half Door Brewing||San Diego CA||619-232-9845|
|Lodge at Torrey Pines Main||San Diego CA||858-453-4420|
|Four Seasons Residence Club||Carlsbad CA||760-603-3700|
|Mr A's Pastry||San Diego CA||619-239-1377|
|Nomad Donuts||San Diego CA||619-431-5000|
Recipes that include Rhubarb. One is easiest, three is harder.
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