One of North America’s three vegetables from a perennial plant (along with artichokes and asparagus), rhubarb is also one of the only vegetables most consistently used in sweet preparations. Its tart flavor profile begs for sugar. During April, Anthony’s celebrates the seasonal shift with fresh rhubarb incorporated into cocktails, a salmon salad, seafood entrees, and desserts like Rhubarb slump.
“Our ‘Best of the Season’ program features recipes that highlight the produce that we are so lucky to have available to us in the Pacific Northwest and incorporates them in a way that enables that particular produce to shine,” said Anthony’s executive chef Pat Donahue.
Anthony’s has sourced rhubarb for two decades from Richter Farm in Puyallup. Stalks of traditionally grown field rhubarb usually begin showing up in stores in late March. But the Richters have also pioneered a new way to grow ruby-red stalks available beginning in late January. They allow plants to develop huge root balls over a two-year period, dig them up, and transplant the roots into the dark shallow soil in a 55-degree “hothouse.” The plants are tricked into thinking it is spring and send out stalks that can grow up to 2 inches per day. Without the sun, no chlorophyll develops and the stalks stay red.
“We love to celebrate the farms that, like us, are local to the area and family-owned and are producing products that are exceptional in quality,” Donahue said.
For more information on the rhubarb dishes offered during April, visit anthonys.com.