This year’s wet spring resulted in a bumper crop of rhubarb. We thought we’d try its fruit-vegetable identity crisis as part of a main dish. The result? A rich, tart sauce that pairs perfectly with chicken. It’s easy to make, but takes some time. You’ll need a heavy, oven-proof 12-inch skillet or a Dutch oven for this recipe.
Serves four to five people.
Serve with mashed sweet potatoes (use extra sauce as a gravy) and cooked greens.
Cook’s Note: First time out, the sauce in this dish was watery, so we spooned out about a cup of liquid, whisked in a heaping teaspoon of cornstarch and stirred it back into the pan to thicken. The culprit? The chicken. Most chicken (including the bargain thighs we bought) is cooled in ice-cold chlorinated water, where they absorb some of the liquid. Air-chilled chicken (usually pricier and labeled as such) gives you more flavor, a crisper skin and less water in the pan. We’ll still buy bargain chicken, but next time we’ll be prepared. Our rhubarb is the old-fashioned green variety; Red would make the dish more attractive!