In Focus: Pine River Parishioners Savoring The Sweet Taste Of Rhubarb During Festival
Many people use the celery-like stalk of a rhubarb plant in baked goods for a sweet, but tart, flavor.
Every year, the three churches making up the Our Lady of the Lakes parish come together for “Rhubarbfest.” It started as a sidewalk sale to sell a church-made cookbook, but has expanded into much more.
They used to ask parishioners to bring pies, but now make them at Our Lady of Lourdes in Pine River.
Down in the basement of the church, a group of bakers are about halfway to their goal of making 400 pies.
Yvonne Switajewski used to run an ice cream and pie shop down in Hackensack with her husband. She’s got the system down pat.
Barbara Demm says she usually gets her pies from the store, but is helping out in the kitchen today. The key to the perfect hand made pastry? You’ve got to wait for the bubbles and color.
While the pies are selling out quick, another fan favorite is the rhubarb ketchup. Made with tomatoes, sugar, spices, and of course, rhubarb, Linda Mcnamara says it brings a tangy twist to barbecue. People can try it out the flavor profile while grabbing some lunch.
They take rhubarb pulled pork and pair it with rhubarb baked beans. Topped with a scoop of coleslaw, it’s the perfect summer meal.
For some who are not as adventurous, perhaps some homegrown rhubarb jam is the perfect addition to your breakfast.
If you’re looking to give to take a chance with some of these treats, Rhubarbfest will also run from 9 AM to 3 PM on Saturday, July 29th.