About a month ago, I texted my grandma – yes, she’s a cool grandma that knows how to text – to ask her if she had any rhubarb for me. She has a connection, you see, and she can get rhubarb all season long. When I found this out last summer, she became my rhubarb hookup and you can bet I didn’t forget about it when the right time of year rolled around.
Rhubarb is one of those things like berries and navel oranges and morel mushrooms that only peak for a brief period of time each year. And in that short span, you appreciate the small things in life so much.
And rhubarb is also how I know when it’s summer.
The first batch that my grandma brought to me was a bit on the green side, which doesn’t affect the flavor, but I didn’t want to use it in baked goods since it wasn’t that bright red color. My solution: cook it down into something useful and tasty, of course.
And by the time it was done cooking down, it turned out to be a lovely pink color after all.
The uses for this simple syrup are endless. You can add it to your favorite summer cocktail, a glass of prosecco, or a pitcher of fresh lemonade – PS, watch for that recipe soon ;).
If you don’t have a super-cool rhubarb hookup like I do, your best bet for finding rhubarb is your nearest farmer’s market. Look for stalks that are sturdy, crisp, and still have the greens attached for maximum freshness.
They may not seem like much but they offer endless possibilities for creativity. So far, I’ve only tried them sweet – in this simple syrup and in a rhubarb crisp. But with my next batch, I plan to try out a savory preparation.
- Serves: 8 oz.
- Calories: 103
- Fat: 0 g
- Saturated fat: 0 g
- Unsaturated fat: 0 g
- Trans fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 27 g
- Sugar: 25 g
- Sodium: 3 mg
- Fiber: 1 g
- Protein: 1 g
- 4 cups chopped rhubarb
- 1 cup cane sugar
- 1 cup water
- Clean and chop rhubarb stalks into ½" chunks.
- In a medium saucepan, combine chopped rhubarb, sugar, and water. Stir to combine.
- Bring to a boil and then decrease the heat to a low-medium simmer. Continue cooking for 40 minutes to 1 hour, until the mixture thickens.
- Allow the rhubarb mixture to cool for 20 minutes.
- Using a medium bowl, cut a piece of cheesecloth large enough to fit over the bowl. Pour the rhubarb mixture over the cheesecloth and pull up the cloth to make a balloon around the liquid.
- Gently squeeze the "balloon" of rhubarb until all/most of the juice has been extracted.
- Store the syrup in a mason jar and refrigerate.