Rhubarb is something people love as a desert and pastry in this season, but in Chinese tradition, the root is well known as a medicine for some thousand years to treat many of digestive complaints such as constipation and gastritis. As a food, rhubarb is a good source of vitamin C, fiber and calcium, so it is great for preventing illness like osteoprosis.
I was once at a presentation about local eating in Toronto, and they were suggesting using fresh rhubarb for substitute of lemon (which is not a native plant to northern hemisphere). This gave me the idea of using rhubarb in cooking and made this dish: Ontario lamb with red wine & rhubarb reduction. It has a sweeteness from caramelized onion, and mild sourness from rhubarb that melts in red wine. Yes, it goes just perfect with lamb!
Hope you have a nice celebration with seasonal, local food this month!
NOTE: If you have a chance to harvest fresh rhubarb, remember that the leaves are toxic in large quantity, so do not eat the leaves!
Ontario Lamb with Red Wine & Rhubarb Reduction (for serving of 2)
- 1/2 lb Ontario lamb chops, rub salt and pepper
- 2 medium onion, cut in thin slice
- 2 ripe tomatoes, cut in cubes
- 3 small to medium stalk of rhubarb, cut in thin slice
- 1 portobello mushroom, cut in large pieces
- 2/3 cup red wine (Ontario wine would be lovely!, like Cabernet sauvignon, Merlot… any of your choice)
- 10-20 Brussel sprouts, cut in half
- 5 leaves of kale, chopped finely
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp fresh tarragon (or parsley), chopped
- Sea salt and black pepper
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Placelamb in the skillet, panfly for 3-5 min each to reach your desired donenes (or you can use a grill to do this part). Take out the lamb from skillet, and keep warm on a serving platter. Use the same skillet, place onion in, and slowly cook for about 10-15 minutes until it becomes golden brown. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper and continue cooking for another 10 minutes until tomatoes disolve to become like a source.
- Add rhubarb and portobello mashroom, Brussel sprouts to the skillet, and cook for a few minutes. Stir in red wine, scraping any bits of lamb from the bottom of the skillet, then continue to cook and stir over medium-high heat for about 10 minutes, until the sauce has reduced by half. Remove from heat, and add kale and fresh tarragon, cover the top until kale becomes temder. Pour over the lamb chops, and serve.
You can add any vegetables that you wish such as green beans, asparagus, zucchini, and/or colourful peppers would mostly goes well together with this dish. I made this in a one-pot, but you can also cook the vegetable separately (like steaming, grilling, boiling etc) and serve as a side.