Summer is the time for cold, tasty drinks – and what better thing to sip on than a fizzy beverage with homemade rhubarb simple syrup?
This recipe is a yummy way to use the abundant amounts of rhubarb coming out of the garden this time of year – and has a zero-waste sister recipe to use the leftover rhubarb stalks once you have your juice!
And, as the name indicates, this is so simple to make with minimal time and ingredients.
The first step is obviously harvesting your rhubarb.
The leaves are poisonous, so discard them in a safe place where no little ones or critters will be tempted to try nibbling on them.
You want the stalks to be relatively young so they are nice and dense; old woody stalks will not have the peak flavour you are looking for.
Wash well, then chop 4 cups into roughly 1 inch pieces; this part does not need to be anything fancy or precise as they will simmer down into a sauce as you cook the rhubarb.
Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a large pot (if you live in the city and have chlorinated water, you will want to filter it or used bottled water for the best taste).
Add the rhubarb and 1 cup of white sugar.
For a sugar-free option, you can substitute 1 teaspoon of powdered stevia in place of the sugar.
Return the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, the rhubarb should be very soft and falling apart.
I personally love to add 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla and 1/4 lemon (juiced) at this point for a bit of extra flavour.
Place a large colander inside a large bowl and line the colander with cheese cloth.
Carefully pour the hot mixture into the colander and allow to drain, then lift the cheese cloth and give it a gentle squeeze to get a bit more of the remaining juice.
NOTE: do not squeeze all of the juice out.
Place the rhubarb pulp back into the original pot to use for rhubarb leather later (this is where the zero-waste comes in!)
Remove the colander; you will be left with beautiful, bright red juice in the bowl!
Using a funnel, ladle the juice into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to a month.
For a fizzy, refreshing summer drink, try mixing 1 part rhubarb simple syrup with 3 parts sparkling water.
The whole point of pairing rhubarb simple syrup with my rhubarb leather recipe is to make full use of the whole stalk and literally not throw anything away!
So, now you get to go back to that original pot with the rhubarb pulp and get started on the rhubarb leather recipe! (CLICK HERE)
4 cups rhubarb, chopped
4 cups water
1 cup sugar (or 1 teaspoon powdered stevia)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 lemon, juiced
Chop 4 cups rhubarb and add to pot with 4 cups boiling water.
Add 1 cup sugar or 1 teaspoon powdered stevia.
Return to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove from heat and add vanilla and lemon juice.
Ladle into airtight container and store in the fridge up to 1 month.
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