Rhubarb is a classic ingredient in many Irish desserts, and for me it brings back memories of my grandparents little walled vegtable garden in the heart of Co. Armagh. Ruby red stalks of wonder ripening in the sun that made the most delicious pies and crumbles. Tart, yet tasty. An Irish beauty...but here's the rub, did you know that this humble vegtable is a bona fide superfood that can heal digestive systems, lower your cholesterol and...wait for it...ward off cancer!?
Yes, according to new research published in the journal 'Food Chemistry', rhubarb could be an important natural remedy in the battle against cancer. Researchers discovered that natural chemicals called 'polyphenols' found within the plant may help to destroy cancer cells. And here's the best part...to harness the cancer blasting effects of these 'polyphenols' the rhubarb must first be exposed to heat. Yup, you guessed it...you've gotta bake it! Music to the ears of cooks everywhere. Now the humble rhubarb pie is a power punching, cancer killing, fat eating super food!
Now, I know what you're thinking, surely vegtables must be eaten raw to get to all that goodness. Well, in may cases yes that may be true, but not in this one. The anti-cancer benefits are greatly enhanced by baking it in the oven for at least twenty minutes researchers tell us.
This is good news, right? Yes indeed, let's roll up our sleaves, pick up some wonderful red rhubarb at your local market and let's have some fun with our latest superfood....
So, tune in next time for a wonderful recipe that I will share with the world, namely a 'Rhubarb and peach crumble with fresh ginger cream', perfect for Sunday cookouts and 4th of July parties.
...until then foodie fans!
the Irish foodie.