While forced rhubarb is available from the beginning of the year, the field grown stuff tends to appear later, from April until later summer. The stems are big and bountiful with a tartness that works in everything from dramatic desserts to fruity sauces for roast meat.
This quintessentially British vegetable (yes, that's right, vegetable) is delicious sweetened and added to tarts, crumbles, pies, ice creams and even cocktails. Why not make the most of it while it lasts?
We've pulled together a selection of our favourite rhubarb recipes that showcase just how versatile this pretty pink ingredient can be...
Rhubarb and ginger sour
Fancy a drink? This sharp, refreshing rhubarb and ginger sour hits the spot, combining rhubarb and ginger liqueur with lime juice and a green tea syrup. Celebrating rhubarb season in the best way possible!
eton rhubarb mess with rose petals and pistachios
This Eton mess recipe substitutes strawberries for rhubarb and cream for yogurt. Orange juice, rose petals and pistachios give it a Middle Eastern twist – this dessert is definitely dinner party-friendly.
Rhubarb crumble muffins
These fluffy crumble-topped muffins stay moist with a little help from the fresh rhubarb inside. They’re perfect for lunch boxes, as a mid-afternoon treat, or simply warmed in the microwave with some delicious vanilla custard for an extra-quick pudding when those sugar cravings just won’t budge.
Griddled duck with rhubarb
Everyone knows rhubarb works well in a pie or crumble, but have you ever tried it alongside a meaty main course? This griddled duck with fiery ginger and rhubarb compote balances crispy duck skin, rich meat and tart rhubarb. Serve with basmati rice for an impressive main course you can have on the table in under 40 minutes.
strawberry and rhubarb smash toast
We like rhubarb at any time of day, including for breakfast. This smash toast calls for chunks of strawberry and rhubarb, simmered in orange juice and spooned onto soft cheese-topped toast. Beats your usual bowl of cereal!
Easy rhubarb curd
This super simple fruity spread is great on everything from toast to our Persian pavlova, and makes a great present too. With just five ingredients, it couldn’t be more simple to rustle up some of our homemade curd to impress a loved one. Toast has never tasted so good...
Triple-tier Persian pavlova
Middle-Eastern cooking is all about balancing acidity with rich meat or creamy desserts, whether it's sour sumac and chicken or mouth-puckering pomegranate and pastry.
In this Persian play on pavlova, we’ve used British rhubarb to cut through the sugary meringue and its sumptuous filling, with rosewater and crumbled pistachios adding Middle Eastern fragrance and texture.
Rhubarb and custard ice cream
Our homemade rhubarb ice cream is indulgent, delicious and doesn’t even require an ice cream maker. Simply combine fresh ready-made custard with cream and ripples of sharp, stewed rhubarb for a mouth-watering dessert.
April sunshine got you craving the tastes of summer? Pop a scoop of this in a tall glass and top up with cream soda or lemonade for an ice cream float with a difference!
Mackerel with rhubarb salsa
This summery salsa with softened rhubarb, crunchy cucumber, red onion and chilli is colourful, fiery and exploding with flavour. The stewing juices from the rhubarb coat the other ingredients, forming the salad dressing and uniting the bold flavours. This unique salsa pairs beautifully with the crispy new potatoes and flaky mackerel.
In a hurry? Using cook-from-frozen mackerel fillets means you can get dinner on the table as soon as possible without having to worry about defrosting your fish during the day.
Yorkshire rhubarb cheesecake
Creamy and dense baked cheesecake and syrupy stewed rhubarb is a match made in pudding heaven. The sticky, jewel-like topping is just tart enough to cut through the rich filling and crumbly, sweet base.
Our recipe uses Yorkshire Forced Rhubarb to make sure the tart fruit is as pink as possible, although you could easily replace this with the field variety, substituting the water for pomegranate juice to keep the topping a vibrant pink.
Just when you think cheesecake can’t get any better…