Rhubarb, Cucumber & Mint Salsa
Increasingly, I’m realizing that every culture has its form of “salsa.” When I was down in St. Lucia a few weeks back, I found out they have their version called souscaille. In South Asian cuisines, it’s called kachumber, and in African cuisines, kachumbari. At all points, it’s a fresh salad, often with onions or shallots, with acidity in the form of the juice or segments of citrus or vinegar. I wanted to inject a little seasonality into my salsa this week, and spring’s tart rhubarb was the perfect add.
Rhubarb, contrary to popular belief, is a vegetable, and it has a crisp, fresh texture that’s somewhere between jicama and celery with a sourness that’s reminiscent of green apples. I’ve played with it before in a dessert, a granita, but here I wanted to see what it could do from a savoury point of view.
The cucumber and rhubarb meld together beautifully. You have the cooling, soothing, watery cucumber contrasted with the tart bite of the rhubarb. The shallots add mellow onion flavor and the fresh mint a bright finish. It would be perfect on fish or shrimp tacos or a simply grilled chicken breast. Enjoy!
Yields approximately 2 ½ cups
2 mini seedless cucumbers, cut into a small dice
1 stalk rhubarb, cut into small dice
1 shallot, finely chopped
juice of half a lime
½ tsp kosher salt
pinch cayenne pepper
pinch white sugar
small handful fresh mint, finely chopped
In a small bowl, toss together the cucumbers, rhubarb and shallot. Add the lime juice, salt, cayenne, sugar and mint mix thoroughly.