Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake

I can't get enough of rhubarb this spring, I find myself bringing it home by the pound and looking for as many different recipes as possible to use it! I mean I know rhubarb pie is nice, but I have managed to make the barb into an amazing curd, a tart, compote and a couple of cakes this season. I made this cake for a big BBQ. Its really easy and fast, pretty and tastes great.

I got this recipe from Martha Stewart, and added a layer of strawberries I had kicking around to the top. They didn't stick around because the cake takes almost 50 minutes to bake, so they pretty much turned to jam, but they added to the flavour and really upped the brilliant red of the rhubarb. There is a second best secret part to this cake- the bottom has a crumb topping on it! It adds a bit of salt and crunch to the cake that is really, really nice. The recipe also calls for orange juice and zest, and I think its the perfect compliment to the tart flavours of the rhubarb.
The rhubarb is macerated in 3/4 cups of sugar, which I thought at first was a lot, so cut it down a bit. My cake topping was quite tart, which I loved! But if you like a sweeter rhubarb you could safely up the sugar a bit.

When the cake first came out of the oven, I almost didn't want to flip it over because that crumb coat looked so pretty! I have been using my spring-form pan to great success with upside-down cakes lately because removing the sides of the pan makes flipping the cake that much less scary.

Martha has done it again, this is such a lovely cake. It would be great served with a bit of creme fraiche. 

I also made this rhubarb cake recipe earlier in the spring, and it was a great transition between a warm winter cake and spring, with the addition of cinnamon and brown sugar- I turned this one into an upside down cake as well, and cut the rhubarb up into smaller pieces for the top. When Sasha was visiting she made the cake again for guests, and people loved it.

If you are as obsessed with rhubarb as I am I would recommend also taking a gander through the Martha Stewart website's 'Rhubarb Recipe Slideshow"  here and I dare you not to run out and grab the last of the rhubarb stalks that are left out there. It has such things as a mouth watering rhubarb meringue pie!

Upside-down Rhubarb Cake
Adapted from Martha Stewart

  • For the Topping

    • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • Coarse salt
  • For the Cake

    • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for buttering pan
    •  1.5 pound rhubarb, trimmed and cut on a very sharp diagonal about 1/2 inch thick
    • handful of strawberries
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • Coarse salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange zest plus 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 cup yogurt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make the topping: Stir together butter, flour, sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt until moist and crumbly.
  2. Make the cake: Butter a 9-inch round cake pan (2 inches deep). Dot with 4 tablespoons butter (cut into pieces). Toss rhubarb with 1/2 cup sugar; let stand for 2 minutes. Toss again, and then slice the strawberries. Place the strawberries on the bottom of the pan, and then the rhubarb, trying to make the red parts face down as much as possible
  3. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Beat remaining stick butter and cup sugar with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Beat in zest and juice. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl. Beat in flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with sour cream, until smooth. Spread evenly over rhubarb. Crumble topping evenly over batter.
  4. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and top springs back when touched, about 50 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes. Run a knife around edge of cake, and invert onto a wire rack. Let cool completely.

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