My friend Jo brought a beautiful rhubarb cake to my house a few weeks ago to have with coffee and it was so good that I haven’t been able to stop dreaming about it since. As she’d bought it at her local farmers market I couldn’t ask her for the recipe so I decided to have a play around and try to reproduce it from memory. Because you know, simply going to the markets and buying the cake would have just been way too easy and sensible…
After a couple of trials and mixing dozens of recipes together (Mark ate a lot of Rhubarb cake that week) I finally managed to bake a cake that was worthy of the original. The base was beautifully soft and buttery and the streusel topping had that lovely cinnamon fragrance I was after. Now I suppose the real challenge would be to see what my friend Jo thinks of it, perhaps a blind tasting should be on the cards?
For the cake base:
2 cups of rhubarb, trimmed and chopped
1 1/2 cups plain white flour
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
½ tsp baking powder
3/4 cup sour cream (or Greek style yogurt)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 cup brown sugar (or white caster sugar)
100g butter, softened + 1 tbs for greasing
For the Streusel topping:
60g butter (1/4 cup)
3/4 cup flour
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar
♥ Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease a baking dish.
♥ To make the streusel topping:
Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Take off the heat and add in the sugar. Stir until the most of the sugar has dissolved. Add the flour and cinnamon an quickly stir to combine. It should come together like a thick pastry dough. Press it down and set aside.
♥ To make the cake base:
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, lower the speed and add in the sour cream and vanilla. Mix until just combined. Take the bowl out and using a wooden spoon gently fold in the rhubarb into the mix followed by the flour, baking powder and baking soda.
♥ Spread the batter into the baking dish. Break the topping mixture into crumbs and sprinkle them over the cake. Gently press them into the batter.
♥ Bake for about 45 min or a toothpick poked in the center of the cake comes out clean.
♥ Enjoy with a nice cup of tea or coffee.
ps. a rhubarb custard tart recipe.