Rhubarb recipes that rock

With a goal of creating something delicious out of rhubarb--other than a pie or a crisp--we were feeling a little skeptical. In our kitchen, we have a little nickname for rhubarb--rude-barb. So it was a pleasant surprise to find something to make out of the dreaded red stalks that was yummy. These two recipes are easy to prepare and use ingredients that may already be in your pantry.

Also feeling that chutney with raisins and cloves is rude, we came up with this recipe that is anything but. Perfect to serve with a pork tenderloin, or crispy duck. No cloves. No raisins.
Rhubarb Chutney

what you need:
one bunch rhubarb, chopped--just the red parts (about 2 cups) half of a large onion, chopped (about 1 1/2 cups) 3/4 cup of sugar 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar 1 tbsp. chopped ginger 1/2 tsp. each salt, red pepper flakes, vindaloo spice (or a variation of, try cumin, coriander, cinnamon, curry, mustard--use what you have) optional: fresh herbs to taste, parsley, cilantro, basil--again use what you have. also optional--one cinnamon stick.

The beauty of this recipe is that you cannot prepare it wrong, because the combination of rhubarb, onions, sugar and vinegar taste so right. The spices and herbs just make the creating more fun.

what you do: bring all ingredients to a boil, simmer for 1 hour. Keep an eye on the mixture as it cooks, stirring frequently so it does not stick. I also put a cinnamon stick tied in cheesecloth and let it simmer with the chutney for 10 minutes, then removed it. Let mixture cool. If not planning to use in the near future, either can or freeze your chutney. Your future self will thank you for having this chutney on hand when preparing your future meal.

Rhubarb honey blossom This drink is sweet, with a nice floral scent. Either simply garnish with orange and mint, or add yourself some white rum for a little somethin' extra.

what you need: one bunch of rhubarb pureed in a food processor or blender 1 cup boiling water

honey syrup: 2 cups of water 1/4 cup of honey optional: dash of orange blossom water (available at many Asian grocery stores or online)

what you do: Pour boiling water over rhubarb, let cool, refrigerate for two hours. Prepare honey syrup: boiling water, add honey, let cool. After two hours, strain rhubarb through a cheesecloth lined strainer. Don't worry if you do not have cheesecloth--strain the best you can. Add honey syrup, and optional orange flower water (recommended). Serve over ice and garnish.

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