I just wanted to start today by congratulating The Bitten Word and other winners and finalists in the Saveur Best Food Blog Awards. I am thrilled just to have been on the same page as so many talented and established cooks, writers, and photographers.
Getting back to food…I started flipping out when rhubarb season began. And then I flipped out some more when I found this recipe for rhubarb jam.
There were a number of rhubarb recipes in my books, but this jam, from “Eldress Gertrude Soule of Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village” (in The Best of Shaker Cooking, of course) really caught my eye. Mostly because I was thinking, onion? Really?
Onion, along with apples and raisins, adds depth to this jam. The rhubarb itself – with the help of a spiced vinegar syrup – brings in a lovely tang that complements the sweetness of the fruit.
Here you see salt, pepper, ginger, and allspice being added. An odd mix of “sweet” and “savory” seasonings, for sure. This is the general theme of this jam: it has one foot in dinner and the other in dessert.
All these ingredients are simmered. For hours and hours. Until the fruits all break down and caramelize and the vinegar sourness cooks off. And the result looks kind of nasty.
But, I promise it tastes awesome! I’ve tried eating it with sausage on English muffins for breakfast, using it as a glaze for shrimp, pairing it with goat cheese…and just slathering it on bread and going to town. It’s so, so good. And so, so simple to make.
Sweet-and-Savory Rhubarb Jam (Makes 2 pints)
8 oz. raisins
2 small onions, peeled and chopped fine
1 c. plus 2 tbsp. grantulated sugar
2 tbsp. molasses
1 1/2 c. white vinegar
1 tbsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp. ground allspice
1 tbsp. ground ginger
4 c. chopped rhubarb (in 1/2-inch pieces)
1 c. finely chopped peeled, cored apples
1. Pulse the onions and raisins in a food processor for about 30 seconds.
2. Bring the sugar, molasses, vinegar, salt, pepper, and spices to a boil and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
3. Lower the syrup down to a slight simmer and add the raisins, onion, rhubarb, and apples. Cook, stirring regularly, for about 3 hours. The resulting mixture should be dark brown and gluey, and most of the vinegar tang should have cooked off.
4. Seal in sterilized glass jars.
What a great recipe! I have some rhubarb I need to use – I might have found a winner!
Yum. This sounds very similar to a rhubarb chutney I had at a restaurant a couple of years ago… it was served with slices of pork tenderloin, and it was unimaginably good.
Thanks for sharing the recipe. Now I can make it at home (as soon as I get my hands on some rhubarb, that is). Can’t wait! 🙂
Interesting recipe..I really need to try rhubarb, it is about time hahaa
Definitely a chutney! I make a similar one with diced red peppers included and some coriander seeds and hot peppers as well. Really good and very useful. Makes a men BBQ sauce for chicken. I see a canning weekend in my future…
It’s weird, but I’ve only ever had rhubarb as a sweet, not in any sort of savoury dish. I am trying to wrap my mind around it. But this jam looks like a great combination of both.
The jam looks amazing! I haven’t had anything like it…Onion with apples, raisins, and rhubarb – intriguing!
I like all of these spices paired with the sweet rhubarb! YUM!
Oooh a sweet and savory jam? Why do I feel like this would be great with brie and proscuitto in a sandwich?
Interesting! This rhubarb is not common in Japan and it’s so interesting to see how you cook with it. Definitely first time seeing a jam made out of it. Thank you for sharing. I became far more educated in cooking because of visiting amazing bloggers like you. It’s quite fun to learn all kinds of combination of food!
I get all excited for rhubarb season too! Can’t wait to get my hands on some! This certainly is an interesting recipe but I think it would be great as a glaze on fish or seafood.
I think I need to start growing my own rhubarb, all these recipes make me so curious! I’ve never tasted it either but love the pink color in baked goods. This jam looks interesting, wish I could try it 🙂
Wow, that really looks different from other jam I would expect, haha, but I bet it tastes heavenly! I love when things can be savory or sweet 🙂 Hells yeah to rhubarb season!
Yum, this looks like it would be great on a goat cheese sandwich. I haven’t made anything with rhubarb yet this year, and this reminds me that I better put a fire under it before rhubarb season is over!
This jam looks so delicious! The flavors sound so interesting too. Yum!
I’ve been seeing so many rhubarb recipes lately, but I can always count on you to try something different! I love the savory sweet combination… this sounds like it would make a great marinade too!
I never had rhubarb and look at so many variation of dishes … sweet treat .. jam, making me wonder why am I behind 🙂 So, I am going to get some this weekend and give a try 🙂
I really want to try rhubarb again since I wasn’t a fan growing up. I think this looks amazing and I am looking forward to trying it soon. I think it would make a great gift for friends too. Fingers crossed I can find some rhubarb here.
Well, doesn’t that sound fantastic. Each year as canning time approaches – rhubarb time sort of signals it for me, I enjoy seeing what others come up with. I can imagine that the flavors would marry especially well with goat cheese.
Omigoodness – this looks amazing! We are suckers here for sweet meets savory kinda jams. This one may make it to the top 10 list the way you make it sound! How beautiful…
That rhubarb recipe looks so great and I really wanted to try doing something with rhubarb. Plus, it’s low sugar which is right up my alley! I make a lot of low sugar/low fat etc etc stuff (http://drjulesinthecity.weebly.com). On a totally unrelated note, I see you’re in law school. I finished med school somewhat recently and I remember how hard it was to balance cooking and studying (and how destressing it was to make something when I had a deadline!).
Your pics are great and I do the same thing on my page (taking pics of the ingredients and then the process).
[…] Check out this sweet and savory rhubarb jam […]
I just saw Michelle O waving a stalk of rhubarb about in a NYT column! Your jar is dwindling here btw. haven’t tried it with nutella yet but there’s always a first time for everything!
This is the exact recipe I have searched forever for. I made it in the early ’70s and somehow lost the recipe. I cant wait to get the rhubarb picked and start cooking. Thanks so much!
Cant find fresh, buckled under bought frozen cuz love rhubarb, found your recipe, can I use frozen?drain n Dry it? Same
Me 4 c.? Thanks!
@Flee – Because this is a chutney, I’d say just defrost the rhubarb and toss it in – everything’s getting cooked into mush anyway!