This post is a repost shared from https://www.nurtureinnature.ca. If you enjoy Kristina’s adventures in permaculture, which she has begun to share with us, be sure to follow her there.
I wasn’t going to make rhubarb sauce this year- it needs a disgusting amount of sugar to make it taste good, and then it leaves that hairy feeling on my teeth. It’s not good for me, and it doesn’t feel good, so why spend the time?
But, then I realized what was growing in a patch behind the farmhouse.
Sweet Cicely has the natural chemical anethole that, when cooked, is twice as sweet as sucrose. It grows here in BC, and is a natural, unprocessed sugar. Now I don’t feel so bad about eating rhubarb sauce; it has half the amount of sugar in it, and I like eating it because it doesn’t leave that weird feeling in my mouth.
Note to all, my mom taught me to cook with measurements. But when I am out foraging, it is hard to get “2 cups of rhubarb”. Sometimes I end up with 3. Or 9. So I cook with proportions, and taste test to get it right. Good luck!
1 part Rhubarb, cut into small pieces.
With about 2 inches of water in the bottom of the pot so the rhubarb doesn’t burn, bring to a boil and let the rhubarb break down and become saucy and thick.
Once it is about the desired texture, add 1/2 part diced sweet cicely.
Add1/4 part of sugar, let it boil until you can no longer taste the liquorice flavour of the sweet cicely.
You can add other fruits, like strawberries, and lessen the amount of sugar you need even more.
Enjoy your rhubarb sauce on vanilla ice cream, in pies, or on yoghurt and granola for breakfast!
I wouldn’t say it is healthy, per se.
But at least it isn’t as unhealthy as it was, and it came mostly from my backyard!
We deserve some sweet treats some times.