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The Great Book of Rhubarb

The Great Book of Rhubarb

by Elaine Lemm

from the publisher

History: Follow this seemingly unassuming vegetable (yes it is veg, not a fruit) from the earliest times as a medicine in China and Russia to its arrival on these shores in the 14th century with promises of purifying blood and making young wenches look fair. You can watch how rhubarb moved from the apothecary's hand to the cook's table centuries later and slowly became one of the most useful and versatile ingredients in the kitchen and popular plants in the garden. You can read why it fell out of favour in the latter half of the 20th century to rise again as an A-list celebrity of super foods in the 21st.

Rhubarb in the Kitchen: Rhubarb can be baked, steamed, boiled. It appears in pies, tarts, puddings, mousses and fools. From sophisticated jellies to hearty crumbles on a winters' day or as a sauce for meat or fish, rhubarb is at home on the main course as it is with the puddings. Add it to jam, to a chutney or relish, turn it from vegetable to wine or steep it in vodka, it can even be used to clean burnt pans. Rhubarb really is the workhorse of the kitchen.

Rhubarb in the Restaurant: Put the slender pink stalks in the hands of a chef and see what happens, exciting stuff for sure especially those of Yorkshire's Michelin stars.

Rhubarb on the Map: Why and how did rhubarb find its home in the heart of Yorkshire? What was the attraction and what or who has kept it growing here so long and elevated it to worldwide renown. Though Britain has become something of a spiritual home to rhubarb it is also known and loved in many other parts of the world. Recipes abound, some already familiar and many further exalting rhubarb as a multi talented player on the culinary scene.

Rhubarb in the Garden: There was a time when every garden would have a few crowns of rhubarb lurking somewhere - usually under a bucket. Why? Because rhubarb is so easy to grow especially the outdoor summer varieties. Rhubarb will flourish with little attention but if you need more guidance find out about rhubarb varieties, growing, forcing, propagating and even composting rhubarb with advice from specialist growers at RHS Harlow Carr. Rhubarb Celebrations: Not many vegetables can claim to have their own festival but rhubarb can and does. Take a look at the annual Rhubarb Festival in Wakefield, West Yorkshire and see where else in the world celebrations take place.

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Original Publisher
Great Northern Books
Date of publication