Each spring one of the first things to poke up through the ground in the spring are little reddish wrinkled faces that quickly, somehow turn into enormous green umbrellas on a long stem. I’m talking rhubarb. Every kid at some point must try eating it raw? I thought it was some kind of virtue if I could eat a stem with a bit of salt and beat my brother at it. But homemade strawberry rhubarb pie, or rhubarb crisp or muffins, it is the essence of early summer happiness. This year I happened on a new recipe that sounded interesting and good enough to try. After months of grim weather and ice, grilling almost anything is so compelling it almost hurts. I found this on the Taste of Home site: Rhubarbeque. Yes. What could be better than some combination of rhubarb, beef ribs and hot charcoal?
This unique barbecue sauce which is a roller-coaster ride for your tongue, and unfortunately is better for the Dutch oven than the grill, a little disappointing, but in the end a keeper.
Try this recipe with either country style ribs or beef short ribs which require a longer bake.
1-1/2 t. salt , 1 t. ground pepper
1-1/2 t. paprika (I used smoked paprika to give that little punch of grilled flavor)
3-4 pounds of boneless country-style pork ribs or beef short ribs
3 cups sliced fresh or froze rhubarb (about 7 stalks)
2 cups fresh strawberries halved
3 T olive oil, 1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup brown sugar, 3/4 cup ketchup
1/2 cup red wine vinegar, 1/2 cup bourbon
1/4 cup soy sauce, 1/4 cup honey
2 T Worcestershire sauce, 2 t. garlic powder (I finely chopped 4 garlic cloves)
1 t. red pepper flakes, 1 t. coarsely ground pepper.
- preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix salt, paprika and pepper; sprinkle on ribs.
- In a large saucepan, combine rhubarb and strawberries; add water to cover. Boil uncovered 8-10 minutes until rhubarb is tender. Drain (SAVE THE JUICE! You’ll see why below.) Return to pan and mash until blended.
- In a Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Brown ribs in batches, adding oil as needed. Remove from pan. Set aside.
- Add onion to same pan, cook until tender. Add remaining ingredients, stir in rhubarb mixture. Add ribs back into Dutch oven, turning to coat. Bring to a boil. Bake covered for 2 hours or until tender. Bake uncovered another 30 minutes until sauce is slightly thickened. Yield: 8 servings.
Now, you lucky person, you are going to be so happy you saved that strawberry/rhubarb juice because if you put 2-3 T in a tall glass, add ice and a small can of Sprite you will have the most refreshing, wonderful cold drink EVer. With a little voka, even better. Try it, then share it with friends and make them guess the flavor. They’ll never get it. Win, win all around.