|Rhubarb-Ginger Oat Square...half eaten. They were really good.|
Rhubarb really did go in everything. I made the rhubarb tarts from Good to the Grain (a version of those can be found here). I made Urid Dal with Rhubarb from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I made the Flat Omelet with Rhubarb from the same cookbook (probably not my favorite thing ever, but interesting). I made crumb-topped rhubarb muffins. Emily, my canning buddy, and I even made Rhubarb Orange Chutney from Ashley English's Canning and Preserving, so that in the winter, when I was finally craving rhubarb again, I could have some. We also pickled asparagus that day. One of the few days all spring when both were available at the market. Now I'll have both things when those insatiable spring vegetable cravings start, which is generally December. Look at me, planning ahead again. Way ahead.
So, maybe--though come February when it's cold and windy and snowing and dark and I am pleading with the heavens to send some sunshine and asparagus and rhubarb, I will deny I ever said this--I might have been a little tired of rhubarb. Then I stumbled across a recipe for rhubarb-ginger syrup. I knew that this recipe and I were going to be good friends. The syrup was not overly sweet, with the nice rhubarb tang and a bit of kick from the ginger (which of course, I added more of than the original recipe called for). The possibilities for playing with this recipe up are amazing--add a couple of cardamom pods while you simmer the rhubarb and ginger for a spicy-sweet syrup, add strawberries to it for a strawberry-rhubarb-ginger syrup (and perhaps make strawberry-rhubarb margaritas like they had at Counter in the spring?). You can use it to flavor seltzer or even a sparkling white wine. But what was left over from the syrup was even better--a gorgeous, pink, gingery rhubarb pulp that I have used in several different ways since first making the recipe.
Rhubarb Ginger Syrup
Adapted from a recipe from Cheryl Paff
2 c chopped rhubarb (this is a little less than a pound)
1 c water
1 c sugar
4 slices fresh ginger
1 t grated fresh ginger
the zest of 1/2 a lemon
Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat until rhubarb is soft and falling apart (about 15 minutes). Strain into a small jar, pressing the rhubarb and ginger to release the juices. Reserve the pulp.
After you do this you can turn the syrup into...
1 c freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 c rhubarb-ginger syrup
2 c water
Combine lemon juice, syrup and water. Stir and refrigerate. When ready to serve, pour over ice and add sparkling water or seltzer in a 1:1 ratio. This makes a lemonade that is slightly on the tart side. If you like your lemonade sweeter, increase the rhubarb-ginger syrup or add a bit of plain simple syrup.
|Rhubarb Ginger Oat Squares|