Spring has most definitely sprung and with it lovely rhubarb. What to do with a wonderful gift of rhubarb? Make a tart, stew it, make gin? No, I made this Easy Rhubarb and Ginger Cake and it was gorgeous.
Easy Rhubarb and Ginger Cake
My friend Naomi dropped off some veggie seedlings yesterday and also a bunch of rhubarb. Our own rhubarb is a bit weedy at the moment so this was a much appreciated gift.
As I’ve already made rhubarb and ginger gin this year I felt duty bound to drag myself away from the hooch and do something different.
I baked a cake!
Rhubarb and Ginger
The whole rhubarb and ginger combo is a bit like Fred and Ginger really. Almost seems rude not to put them together. Never knowingly rude and all that! Anyway I decided just to do a simple sponge cake but to put some ginger in the mix and then concentrate on putting in some effort on my rhubarb filling.
Keeping the cake base simple meant I could really let the rhubarb shine. The filling was all-important. I simmered the rhubarb with fresh grated ginger (use ground ginger if you don’t have any fresh stuff), a vanilla pod, juice, zest and pulp of an orange, sugar and some of my rhubarb and ginger gin. Well come on, it was there and the urge to chuck some gin in there was just too much for me. Obviously the addition of gin is optional.
Easy Rhubarb and Ginger Cake
OK so I might have gone just a tad overboard with the filling. But you see I had in my mind a cake that would be really special and cheer us up. A bit more of a pudding than just a normal sponge you’d have with a cuppa.
I simmered that filling till all the rhubarb had completely collapsed and the whole thing was reduced to a lovely syrupy mush.
This rhubarb and ginger cake was so easy to make. As I said, the sponge was very simple with just the addition of ginger. I also used smaller cake tins than normal. The standard tins I use are 17cm. These are only 16cm and a little deeper. It makes the cake look a bit more special without having to up the ingredients. Don’t want to be going mad on the flour, eggs and butter just now.
I’ve used unsalted butter but it doesn’t matter if you use salted. When it comes to the frosting I had some cream cheese in the fridge. Mascarpone or ricotta would work just as well. If all else fails just use Greek yogurt.
The trickiest part of making this cake was fishing the vanilla pod out of the stewed rhubarb mixture. Honestly, that was it. I really went to town on that filling. Instead of just sandwiching the cake with the rhubarb mixture I mixed a little of it with my cream cheese frosting then spread that on the cake base. Then I spooned on lots and lots of the rhubarb and ginger mixture. When I put the top cake in place the filling started to ooze out all round. Exactly what I wanted!
The base having this glistening saucy filling all around the sides gave exactly the special cake verging on dessert that I wanted.
This Rhubarb and Ginger Cake was a really special spring time treat. The rhubarb was a gift from a really special friend and so I had to do her proud. Right now when things are pretty shitty I wanted to make something that would make everyone smile. This cake did it.
If you do make this cake then please put a comment here and let me know what you think. I love hearing from you guys and do my best to respond as soon as I can.
Looking for more uses for lovely spring rhubarb? Then check out these recipes;
Rhubarb and Ginger Cake
- 350 g rhubarb chopped into 2cm pieces
- 1 tsp grated fresh ginger (or 1 tsp ground ginger)
- 1 vanilla pod split and seeds scraped out
- 6 tbsp sugar
- 1 orange zest, juice and pulp
- 2 tbsp rhubarb and ginger gin (optional)
- 115 g unsalted butter
- 115 g caster sugar
- 2 free range medium eggs
- 115 g self raising flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tbsp Greek (or plain) yogurt
- 80 g cream cheese
- 30 g unsalted butter softened
- 225 g icing sugar
- Preheat oven to 180C and grease two baking tins (I used 16cm tins but 17 is fine)
- Place the rhubarb and all other ingredients for the filling in a small pan and bring to the boil
- Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or untill everything is pulpy, allow to cool
- Remove the vanilla pod and wash and dry and pop it in a jar of sugar to get vanilla sugar or to use again
- Whazz the mixture in a mini food processor or with a hand blender till smooth
- Beat together all the ingredients till you have a firmish paste
- Spoon out 2 tbsp of this and mix it with 2 tbsp of the cake filling
- Beat the butter and sugar till light and fluffy
- Add the eggs and beat again
- Sift in the flour, ginger and baking powder and fold into the mixture till everything is completely combined
- Add the Greek yogurt and stir carefully into the mixture
- Spoon into the prepared baking tins and bake for approximately 25 minutes till golden and a skewer comes out clean from the centre
- Remove cakes from oven and cool for 5 minutes before removing from tins and cooling completley on a wire rack
- Spread the mix of frosting and filling on to the bottom cake first
- Spread the plain frosting on the top of the other cake. It is easier to do this when the cake hasn't been assembled
- Spoon on all the rhubarb puree on to the base cake so that is all oozes over the sides when you place the other iced cake on top. Reserve a couple of spoonfuls and drizzle this on top of the frosting to finish off your masterpiece
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