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May 9, 2011 03:45 AM

Bad rhubarb experiences. Any recipes to convert me?

Recipes talk about rhubarb being tangy, tart, zingy, whatever. The times I've made it, it just tastes plain sour. And it turns to brown mush. I've tried it poached, as compote and in cake. If I add loads of sugar, it's a bit less sour, but it's still tasteless. If I add spices like cinnamon or ginger, that perks it up a bit, but really it just tastes of the spices.

Who has any super rhubarb recipes that will convert me?

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  1. I wish I had an actual recipe, I will ask my grandmother for hers. However my fav way to eat rhubarb is rhubarb and strawberry pie! Also rhubarb jam, great on buttered toast! I just recently had a rhubarb crumble the other day at a farmers cafe, it was great! So just a couple of suggestions of what to look for when your searching for recipes. when I get my grandmother's recipe I can give you a better idea how to make the jam (its homemade and really easy!)

    1 Reply
    1. re: BelovedofIsis

      I have no recipe either but definitely get some "rhubarb and strawberry pie! "
      It is the best - but I never heard it referred to as anything other than strawberry-rhubarb pie.

    2. Rhubarb cooks very quickly and really doesn't retain its shape. If you don't like it, you don't like it. There's nothing wrong with not liking something everyone else thinks is wonderful. But, since you say you want to be converted, try looking up Persian recipes for savory dishes containing rhubarb. I used to have one for a stew that was quite good, but can't find it anywhere. While I love sweet rhubarb dishes (try using it to replace the berries in a coffee cake recipe), I think it's best when you put that sourness to advantage and use it to tenderize lamb or beef.

      1. Thanks. I should say, I don't need actual recipes, ideas for searches is fine.
        Isolda, I don't like not liking stuff. I tend to think I must be doing something wrong.

        2 Replies
        1. re: loukoumades

          The past couple of years, I've been slicing it and making fruit smoothies with it - this morning, it was a half cup each rhubarb, frozen strawberries (picked last year - not the store-bought sweetened kind), and plain yogurt, along with enough orange juice to make it liquidy. The ratio of sweet strawberries to tart rhubarb can be adjusted, of course, and I considered adding a bit of honey, but my berries are really sweet.

          1. re: loukoumades

            I know you don't want recipes, but I can't resist including this family favorite:
            Rhubarb Raspberry Cobbler (it isn't mushy)
            2 pounds of rhubarb cut in 1/2-inch pieces
            2 cups of fresh raspberries
            1-3/4 cup sugar
            2 Tablespoons flour
            1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
            1 Tablespoon lemon zest
            Toss all ingredients together and spread evenly in 9x13" or 3 quart baking dish
            Top with biscuit crust:
            1-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
            1/4 cup whole wheat flour
            3 Tablespoons sugar + more to sprinkle on top
            2 teaspoons baking powder
            1/2 teaspoon baking soda
            1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
            6 Tablespoons of chilled butter
            3/4 cup to 1 cup buttermilk

            Sift together flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, ground ginger.
            Add chilled butter in pieces and cut in with pastry knife/blender to a coarse meal.
            Stirring with fork - add enough buttermilk to form soft dough.
            Turn on to floured board and roll to 3/8" thick 11x14". Lightly brush with the additional buttermilk and sprinkle with sugar - cut dough into 3/4" strips and lay on the diagonal in one direction 3/4" apart and trim the ends. Lay the remaining strips across the top in the other direction.
            Bake at 400°F for 15 minutes.
            Reduce temperature to 375°F and bake an additional 25 to 35 minutes longer.
            Serve warm.
            to reheat refrigerated leftovers: heat for 20 minutes at 350°F

          2. First, rhubard needs sugar!!!!!!!
            Second, combine rhubarb with strawberries to make heavenly compotes etc.
            Third, rhubard is only red on the very outside. I actually use red food coloring to perk the color up.

            3 Replies
            1. re: monavano

              Some rhubarb is green or pink on the outside even when mature, depending on variety. But the red, if any, disappears in cooking. OP, it sounds like you aren't adding enough sugar. Rhubarb requires 1/2-1 cup sugar per 6 cups (1 lb.). I like to sweeten it with a combination of sugar and Splenda, to control the calories.

     contains a large trove of recipes and other rhubarb particulars.

              1. re: greygarious

                Yes, the red is very superficial, and green is not a sign of immaturity.

                1. re: greygarious

                  I made it in a cake with lots of sugar. And it wasn't too sour. But is it supposed to actually have a taste? Because mine just tastes of mush.

              2. I've always enjoyed this recipe, and I've made it for others who love it. I cut the rhubarb quite small so that it is sure to cook thoroughly: