Tuesday, 26 April 2011

The Rhude-barb Chronicles

Part II of my rhubarb chronicle involves the search for the perfect portable crumble.  
After researching the rhubarb cakes I realised there are a good many recipes out there for rhubarb crumble cake. All hail The Chap! Cake and crumble?
I was convinced that a layer of soft vanillary sponge, tart rosy rhubarb and sweet crunchy crumble could only be improved by the fact you can eat it with your hands. What could be better?  Well, that I stole the rhubarb from my neighbour's allotment made it taste all the sweeter.

After comparing a couple of recipes mainly this Tamasin Day Lewis recipe for Rhubarb and Ginger Crumble Cake and this National Trust recipe for Sticky Rhubarb Cake I decided to just make up my own. It wasn't perfect but I think that was more about my oven than the mix (I have a double width range oven and it cooks slowly). If you fancy having a go here is the recipe:

Rhude-barb Crumble Cake (recipe by BooCakey)

You will need a big tin - this is a big cake (christmas cake sized or a 9 inch square tin)

Sponge cake base

6oz golden caster sugar
6oz Stork or butter
6oz self raising flour
3 eggs (free range - don't be a chicken torturer)
2 oz ground almonds
1tsp vanilla paste/ extract
1tsp baking powder

Rhubarb bit

4-6 sticks of rhubarb chopped into 1cm widths
1-2 tsp golden caster sugar

Crumble topping

5oz flour (self raising or plain)
5oz butter (real butter - no margarine for this)
2 tbsp golden caster sugar


Pre heat the oven to 180oC

Grease and flour your tin - this is a smashing tip from www.libertylondongirl.com because it helps cook the bottom of your cake too.

Wash and chop up the rhubarb, toss in the sugar and put to one side.

Make the cake batter. Chuck all the ingredients in a bowl (sieve the flower though you lazy bugger) and whizz with a hand mixer or if you are mixing by hand - cream the Stork and sugar first, then mix the eggs in one at a time with the flour, baking powder and almonds and vanilla.

If you can cope with the washing up, get out your food processor and make the crumble by whizzing together the butter and flour (put the flour in first - it helps stop the butter from sticking to the blades of the processor) then add the sugar. It should look bread crumby.  If you are a by hand type then get messy and rub the flour and butter through your fingertips until you have a bread crumbs type consistency. Stir in the sugar.

Bring it all together

Pour the cake batter into the greased and floured tin, next comes the rhubarb, then a blanket of crumble topping. Stick in the the oven for about 45 mins.  It will be cooked when it stops wobbling and the top is golden brown.  

Now here is the bit where I messed up. In my wisdom when I realised the cake was cooked but the top not quite brown and crunchy enough for my liking I turned on the grill and left it to *crisp up.  

School girl error, I took my eyes off it for a second and over browned the topping. Fortunately, picking the worst bits off and sprinkling with icing sugar saved the day and less than 24 hours after its creation the whole lot has been eaten.  This one is best served room temperature I think and when I make it next time I may get a little crazy and add some demerara sugar to the crumble topping for extra crunch. 

1 comment:

  1. i need some of your rhubarbish tartness in my life. soon. x