Rhubarb in my taco

I really enjoy rhubarb and I love that more and more bloggers are embracing the versatile vegetable too. I've seen rhubarb syrups and...

I really enjoy rhubarb and I love that more and more bloggers are embracing the versatile vegetable too. I've seen rhubarb syrups and cocktails, rhubarb oatmeal creations, and pies and crumbles galore. While browsing instagram a few weeks ago I saw a picture of stewed rhubarb on oatmeal. It looked delicious but also mysteriously resembled pulled pork! I started to think...could rhubarb stand in for meat in a vegan "pulled pork" style entree?! Why the hell not! So, into the kitchen I went, rhubarb in hand, to get to work on a very new, very cool new way to use this delightful vegetable.

I started by roasting the rhubarb in the oven. I decided to throw a few fresh figs in as well assuming they would lend a nice sweetness and softness to my dish. They smelled delightful in there as they caramelized and shrank in the intense heat of my oven.

Once they were both oozy and roasted, I threw them in my food processor along with some ingredients to mimic barbeque sauce flavour. Pulse pulse pulse. I was left with a chunky and delicious barbeque-esque mess. It was a little soft and wet at this stage for my taste though so I threw in a couple medjool dates for binding and density, as well as a lot of beautiful candy cane beet which I grated. The beet shreds made the mixture more substantial and absorbed a lot of the excess moisture from the rhubarb and sauce ingredients. One spoonful, quickly turned into five, I was hooked. Before I devoured it all in one sitting, I decided I should enjoy it as a plantstrong 'taco' by spooning it into some raw collard green leaves (appropriately Southern). I rolled them up and enjoyed them like tiny burritos (minus everything you would expect in a burrito). They were really, really good.

I won't lie, my husband was scared at first. This was one kitchen experiment he had no desire at all to taste test. I shoved it in his face and hoped for a bite. Victory, he loved them too. Don't relegate rhubarb to your next pie, it is so much more than a pseudo-fruit.

Rhubarb Tacos
gluten-free, vegan, plantstrong, paleo
Part 1:
  • 3 cup rhubarb, chopped
  • 3 fresh figs, quartered, top knot removed

Preheat oven to 400F. Add chopped fig and rhubarb to a baking sheet lined with parchment. Roast in the hot oven until figs are golden at the edges and rhubarb has released most of its water.

Part 2:
  • 1 large chiogga beet, grated, skin on
  • roasted rhubarb and figs
  • 1/3-1/2 cup organic tomato ketchup
  • 1 tbsp chopped white onion
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • pinch pink salt
  • 1 tbsp or more garlic powder

Add all part 2 ingredients to a food processor and pulse until sloppy wet. Transfer to a bowl.

Part 3:
  • 1 large grated chiogga beet, divided
  • 1-2 tbsp white onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp-2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 1-2 small pitted dates (I used two small medjool dates, the equivalent of 1 average sized medjool date)
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (optional)

Add all part 3 ingredients (but only half the beet) to food processor and pulse until coarsely mixed. Add the reserved rhubarb mixture and pulse to mix in. Add the extra grated beet and pulse just twice briefly. Adding the extra beet at the end keeps the mixture from becoming way too wet. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until ready to enjoy in taco shells or collard leaves. I like to eat this cold but feel free to heat it up in a frying pan before serving.

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