This weeks blog post come from Environmental Studies intern Alysia Humm.
Rhubarb is a perennial plant that produces long and fleshy edible stalks. Usually, these stalks are a bright pinkish-red color but can also be a light speckled pink or light green. The rhubarb plant also has leaves, but these are not edible because they contain a toxin called oxalic acid.
According to the Health and Nutrition March/April 2017 issue, rhubarb is low in calories, sodium, and fat. A half-cup serving of raw diced rhubarb has 13 calories and 1 gram of fiber. It also provides a 5% daily value of calcium, 8% daily value of vitamin C, 5% daily value of potassium, and 22% daily value of vitamin K (which reduces the risk of bone loss and bone fractures as well as regulates blood clotting).
Rhubarb is commonly used for rhubarb pie. It can also be made into any number of foods from rhubarb jam, sauce, and chutney, to wines and infused juices. While rhubarb is commonly used for sweet dishes such as desserts and fruit juices, there are many ways in which rhubarb can be in savory dishes as well. An example is tossing oven-roasted rhubarb into a salad with some oil, vinegar, and a bit of cheese if desired. Another idea is roasting rhubarb with sliced beets and seasoning with olive oil, pepper, and a pinch of salt. Below is a recipe for a rhubarb-mango smoothie. As the spring months warm up and you are craving a cold and tasty drink simply combine the below ingredients and blend!
Recipe: Rhubarb-Mango Smoothie- taken from Food and Nutrition March/April Issue 2017 p. 29
Serving size: 1 ¼ cups (280 grams)
Prep time: 10 minutes
1 cup unsweetened soy milk
1 cup frozen mango chunks
1 cup frozen sliced rhubarb
⅓ cup fat-free vanilla Greek yogurt
1 date, pit removed, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon chia seeds
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
Add soy milk to a blender followed by the rest of the ingredients. Blend until smooth.