10 May 2012

mom and rhubarb -witty and wise

First the wit: last week's lunch together

" Mom, do you have any regrets looking back on your life?"
" Yes. I wish I had become a nun."
" But then you would not have had me or the rest of your children?"
" That's true. I wish I had become a nun."

" Mom,  can you give me some advise about getting older?"
" Don't."

" But mom, you always said that age is meaningless.  That you are as young as you feel."
" And you believed that?"

" Okay, mom , but you are so lucky. You look great. You feel good. You keep up with what's happening in the world. And you have your family around you."
" Can I have a grilled cheese for lunch?"

Now the wisdom:

fresh cut rhubarb before leaves are removed

My mother never really considered herself a good cook or a not so good cook. In fact, she never gave it a thought one way or the other.  She had five children, a hungry husband, and all she knew was that she had to be able to prepare food for her family.

When I think about my mom and the kitchen here is some of what comes to mind: real mashed potatoes with plenty of butter, fresh vegetables made simple with absolutely no fancy sauces, real homemade stir forever on the stove oatmeal with the raisins tossed in for iron, homemade pie crusts and allowing me to make cinnamon swirls with the bits of crusts she trimmed off, hand sewn aprons because she knew how to sew well, the canning of all the leftover fruits and vegetables from the garden, and of course the mandated sit down at the table at exactly five o'clock to eat dinner, even when she could not be there because the factory changed her hours to the night shift.

In today's world my mom would be considered vogue, trendy, hip, earthy or any of those adjectives we tag onto being closer to our food source. Back then, however, my mom just did what she learned from her mom, "you have to eat so make it eatable".  And she did all this, I might add, working a full time job outside of the home.

Today she is 92 and does not cook at all. But she still appreciates fresh food. Her biggest complaint where she lives now is the meals. Once  taste buds know the real stuff, there is no going back. So I deliver meals to her several times a week and take her up to my place in the summer to appreciate our gardens. For Mother's Day all she wants is for me to make something delicious and have lunch together. "Anything ready in the garden?" she asked.

The answer is yes, mom.  Rhubarb came in early so I am making her Meghan's recipe and I am surprising her with a fresh simple to make rhubarb juice that I created with maple syrup and lime. This is  not only delicious and a great way for storing rhubarb in the freezer but it is full of Vitamin k, the b-complex vitamins, and lots of minerals. The health benefits of rhubarb are endless.

So enjoy mom and Happy Mother's Day to all.



the juice after cooked rhubarb is drained

boil juice down for 15 minutes and add lime and syrup

just liked this picture
my supply for when the season ends
cubes and  sparkling water

Rhubarb Juice
      1 cup water for every ten stalks of rhubarb
      Rhubarb - As much rhubarb as you like.( this is basic 10 stalk recipe)
             ( Be sure to remove leaves and root before boiling)
      1 lime - juice from one lime is good for about 10 stalks
             ( I get organic here because I throw the lime into the pot after I squeese the juice out.)
      4 TBS of maple syrup for every 10 stalks
            ( This is just a guideline. I like tart. You can use white sugar but I avoid it because it counteracts        
            the good effects of rhubarb,)

Wash and slice rhubarb. Drop into a pot with the water. Use medium high heat until it boils and then turn down to a low heat and cover for about thirty minutes. When it is all mushy, drain in a steaming pot or use a cheesecloth or just set a colendar in a bowl. Let it drain naturally for as long as it needs.  The juice is a nice rosy color. When enough has drained, put it back in the pot and add the lime and maple syrup. Simmer for about 15 minutes. Taste it to see if it is the flavor of your liking. If not not add whatever else you think it needs. Let it cool and enjoy. Oh yes, I am also freezing it in ice cube form for summer drinks and to add to my sparkling water.

Try it and experience the energy boost.

1 comment:

  1. This looks delicious and I love the conversation you had with your mom - hilarious!