Pizza dough, goat cheese, crunchy hazelnuts and fresh herbs help rhubarb escape the dessert table

Finally, the fruitful pleasantries of spring have reared their reluctant heads! And it seems like trees exploded with fullness overnight, flowers blossomed before our eyes, and my rhubarb plant reappeared out of nowhere.

But unlike previous years, I'm no longer relegating rhubarb to the dessert table—the more uses I have for it, the more I can support our local growers during this weird time. So have fun and enjoy the bounty around you by still buying from them. They miss seeing you at the farmers markets just as much as you miss going.

*Note: You can use the below recipe for rhubarb spread anywhere you like, really. From BBQ-d chicken wings or tofu to anywhere else you need its lip-smacking, sticky goodness.

​Rhubarb Spread

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 cups chopped rhubarb stalks, fresh or frozen
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • One strip orange zest
  • Juice of one orange

Instructions

  1. In a medium pot, melt butter on high heat.
  2. Add rhubarb and sugar.
  3. Let bubble and stir for around 5 minutes, until the liquid has been drawn out of the chopped rhubarb and has pooled in the pot.
  4. Add orange zest and juice and continue to cook and stir until mixture has become a thick, jam-like consistency, around 7 to 10 minutes (also make sure to mash down any stubborn pieces).
  5. When mixture begins sticking to the bottom of the pot, remove from heat and let cool.
  6. Remove orange zest.

Flatbread

  • 1 to 1½ cups of fresh pizza dough
  • ½ cup (or so) crumbled or chopped goat cheese
  • ¼ cup chopped and roasted hazelnuts
  • Fresh thyme leaves (or another hearty, fragrant herb)
  • Liquid honey
  • Sea salt

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 450 F
  2. Cover baking sheet with parchment paper (or grease well with olive oil).
  3. Add pizza dough to baking sheet and pull and shape until it is roughly the same size.
  4. Spread with a layer of cooled rhubarb spread (not too much as it can make the crust soggyyou will most likely have some left over) and sprinkle with goat cheese.
  5. Add to oven (middle rack) and bake until crust is cooked through and edges are deeply golden (around 15 minutes.)
  6. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with hazelnuts, fresh thyme leaves, sea salt and a generous drizzle of honey.
  7. Cut and serve as a sharing plate, starter or side.