Rhubarb cakeServes 8
This is a good blueprint to use for other fruit-topped cakes. Instead of rhubarb you could try sliced peaches, nectarines, plums, pears or apricots.
You just need to make sure your fruit is tender and ripe – any hard, unripe fruit won’t soften in the half hour it takes the cake batter to cook.
- 125g (4 ½oz) butter, softened and diced,
- Plus extra for buttering
- 125g (4 ½oz) caster sugar, plus 5 tbsp for the rhubarb
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 125g (4 ½oz) self-raising flour, sifted
- 2–3 tbsp milk
- 700g (1lb 9oz) rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 2.5cm (1in) lengths
- Icing sugar, to dust
- Beat the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs a little at a time, beating well after each addition. If the mixture starts to curdle, add a tbsp. of the flour. Add the vanilla, then fold in the flour with a large metal spoon, adding enough of the milk to give the batter a reluctant dropping consistency. Scrape into a buttered 20cm (8in) springform cake tin.
- Toss the rhubarb with the 5 tbsp sugar and spread it over the top of the cake mixture. Bake for 40 minutes in an oven preheated to 190ºC/375ºF/gas mark 5. The rhubarb will be slightly singed in parts. The cake is ready when a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Leave the cake to cool in the tin, then carefully remove the ring and base. Dust with icing sugar before serving.