spicy rhubarb and kale soba noodles
I often read reports on other blogs of rhubarb sited: rhubarb showing up at the farmer's market!, rhubarb snatched up at the store before it's all gone! It feels like my morel or slender asparagus season. But rhubarb? I like, nay near love, rhubarb and so it's a good thing we have a hulking monster of a plant in the back, trying to devour what little garden space we have. Buying rhubarb is a completely foreign, nearly offensive, concept to me.
Last year, we loved making our way through the season with rhubarbtinis and some rhubarb bars (like lemon bars), the recipe for which I cannot for the life of me find at this moment. I've always fancied the idea, though, of using some rhubarb for savory dishes and not just some recipes that require an equivalent weight of sugar added to the rhubarb.
So a few weeks ago, when I came across Naturally Ella's post Rhubarb Recipes (That are Not Pies!) I was quite excited. Last week I made her Swiss Chard and Black Bean Enchiladas With Chipotle Rhubarb Sauce and very highly recommend it. I honestly didn't expect it to pass muster with the boyfriend, who makes his own excellent chicken enchiladas, but he happily devoured that night's portion and the leftovers intended for the next day.
Last night I made Erin's Noodles with Kale and Spicy Rhubarb Sauce (recipe found at the link!)
The only changes I made to this recipe were to replace the scallions (green onions) with spring shallots (because I don't much like scallions, didn't have them, and did have spring shallots to use). I also threw the kale in with the boiling soba noodles for the last few seconds rather than depend on the heat from the noodles to wilt my very springy kale in the bowl.
Although if a few stalks of rhubarb from the farmer's market was my only treat of the year, I'd probably use them for some traditional rhubarb dessert, this recipe is another great way to use rhubarb if you have an abundance. The flavours (lime, rhubarb, cilantro, cayenne) worked very well together. The dish was a bit drier than we liked, in part because the rhubarb sauce was so spicy that we didn't want to add more and overwhelm the dish. Adding lime juice made the noodles more slippery and perhaps next time I'll try a touch of sesame oil (olive oil seemed like it would be out of place in this predominantly Asian tasting dish).