Friday, June 12, 2009

Rhubarb

So my friend Dave sends me an e-mail with rhubarb recipes a couple of weeks back. I figure he had a batch of it in his CSA basket, but no, he just wanted to share. One recipe was for a sweet pudding dish, but two were of the savory variety. I thought the Rhubarb salsa verde sounded interesting. And I had capers and cornichons on hand already. Plus, one stand at the farmer's market at UMB had scallions, green garlic, and rhubarb, so it seemed I was fated to make the stuff.

I prepped the salsa one evening after work. I used more rhubarb and less onion/garlic than called for (actually, I reduced the whole recipe significantly); the result was decidedly not green. More barf-colored, actually. And the flavor, after cooking, was sour, sour, and more sour. Oh, and a little salty. I added some honey to cut the sour and set the batch to cool in the fridge, where it remained for a few days.

One evening, Mr Minx whipped up some flank steak, mashed potatoes,and sauteed Brussels sprouts to go with the salsa verde/rosa.

I know...the salsa looks grotesque.

After hanging around in the fridge for a few days, the salsa tasted far less salty and more fruity than it did immediately post-cooking. It actually did nothing for the meat, sad to say.

A few days later, we had the leftover flank steak in sandwiches, for which I made a rhubarb salsa mayo. Now, that worked. The tart/creamy thing went nicely with the garlicky meat. I dare say it would make an interesting addition to chicken salad, as well.

Green Garlic and Rhubarb Salsa Verde

2 bunches green garlic or scallions (white parts only), finely chopped
4 ribs freshly picked rhubarb, greens removed, finely chopped
3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 teaspoons roughly chopped capers (with about 1/4 teaspoon liquid)
1/2 cup roughly chopped cornichons (with about 1 teaspoon juice)
1-1/2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat, cook garlic and rhubarb in olive oil until tender, about 5 minutes. Raise the heat and add capers and liquid, cornichons and juice, parsley, onion, and lemon juice, scraping the pan to release any browned bits. Add stock and simmer about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Rhubarb Salsa "Verde" Mayo

Add a couple of spoons of salsa to a couple of spoons of mayo. Stir. Slather on something. Eat.