In this easy to prepare relish, rhubarb’s bright lip-smacking flavor gets slightly tempered and brought whole by Pink Lady’s sweetness, crispy bacon’s smoky mouth-melting richness, and the briny roundness of Castelvetrano olives. While often featured with strawberries in sweet dishes, rhubarb has a sensuous savory side that cuts the fattiness of a pan-seared steak and brings roasted duck breast to higher ground than the traditional sweet pairings of cherry compote or orange sauce.
A sly super food, rhubarb contains significant amounts of the polyphenols anthraquinone & tannin; lutein, which promotes skin & eye health by neutralizing free-radicals; antioxidants to prevent a wide range of cancers; calcium for bone health, and vitamin K to fortify the blood’s ability to clot (University Health; Live Strong). Unfortunately, fresh rhubarb has a short window of availability in early through mid-spring, so enjoy it in all its complexity while you can.
With just a short amount of prep time and a few key ingredients, Rhubarb, Pink Lady, and Bacon Relish captures the seasonal bridge between winter and spring. You can prepare all of the ingredients a few hours ahead of time except for the rhubarb peeling and dicing, which is best executed within two hours of serving.
1 slice crisped bacon, small diced
½ cup Pink Lady apple, small diced
1 teaspoon parsley
1 teaspoon honey
1/3 cup rhubarb, peeled and small diced
½ teaspoon lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon hot pepper flakes
3 Castelvetrano olives, pitted and finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt, to taste
1. Cook the bacon in a stainless steel pan on medium-low until crispy. Set it aside to cool on a paper towel.
2. In the same pan, on medium-low heat, cook the diced apple for about 3 minutes.
3. Small dice the bacon once it has cooled.
4. Place all of the ingredients in a medium-sized bowl except the bacon and parsley.
4. Let the ingredients mingle for about 20-30 minutes, fold in the bacon and parsley, and serve over thinly sliced grass-fed flank, hanger, skirt steak or roasted duck breast.
"4 Rhubarb Health Benefits." University Health News. N.p., 03 Apr. 2017. Web. 22 Apr. 2017.
Ipatenco, Sara. “The Health Benefits of Rhubarb.” LIVESTRONG.COM, Leaf Group, 15 Mar. 2011, www.livestrong.com/article/403208-the-health-benefits-of-rhubarb/. Accessed 22 Apr. 2017.