If you're comfortable cooking with rhubarb try pairing it with meat, as in this Persian lamb recipe.
PHOTO: ROB CARDILLO
The stock of this dish is also excellent as the basic stock for spring pea soup, so consider making a large batch and freezing it. Because the stock takes much longer to cook than the lamb, it’s best to make the stock the day before and refrigerate until needed. Serve our Persian lamb with rhubarb recipe over rice or pasta.
Step 1: Lamb Stock
2 quarts water
1 pound meaty lamb bones
4 small (1-inch) pieces of fresh ginger root, cut in half lengthwise
Half of 1 onion
1 tbsp coriander seeds
4 garlic cloves, sliced in half lengthwise
1 slice of lemon or citron, or 6 citron leaves
Combine all the ingredients in a stewing pan and cook in a steady simmer for 40 minutes, then bring to a steady boil over medium-high heat until reduced to 1 quart. Strain through a chinoise or fine sieve and set aside.
Step 2: Prepare the Lamb
5 tbsp unsalted butter
2 medium onions, cut in half lengthwise, then sliced paper thin
2 pounds lamb cut into bite-size pieces
1 1⁄2 tbsp flour (preferably rice flour)
1 1⁄2 tbsp ground coriander
1 quart prepared lamb stock (see Step 1)
1 cup parsley, chopped
4 tbsp mint, chopped
3 cups chopped rhubarb, stringy parts removed
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup unsalted pistachios, toasted
Heat 2 tablespoons of butter until it foams, then add the onion. Cover and sweat 4 minutes over a medium heat, then remove the onion and set it aside. Dust the meat with the flour and cook in the same pan used for the onions until the meat begins to brown on both sides, then add the reserved cooked onion, coriander and stock. Simmer 50 to 60 minutes uncovered, or until the lamb is tender and the stock has thickened.
Melt the remaining butter in a saucepan with the parsley, mint, and rhubarb. Cover and sweat 4 minutes, or until the rhubarb is tender but not falling apart. Add to the stew and adjust seasonings. Serve immediately over rice or angel-hair pasta, and garnish with the pistachios. Serves 4 to 6.