The rhubarb season is nearing it's end now and this year we have had more than our fair share from the allotment crop.
As our allotment had invented a new word for neglect before we got our hands on it, we thought that the existing plant would benefit from a few days in the dark to force new shoots. We ended up creating a monster, a rather delicious one at that.
Stems have been given away to eager family members week after week and still we have a drawer full in the freezer for the coming months. Stewed rhubarb for our morning cereal is always there and crumbles are a certainty each Sunday. It has been a happy year for our rhubarb.
This cake partners the sharp rhubarb with orange, an excellent pairing of flavours. Topped onto an almond and polenta based sponge, it is excellent served warm as a dessert with double cream or room temperature with a strong cup of tea. Either way, you are in for a treat.
Rhubarb and Orange Cake
1 tsp vanilla essence
100g ground almonds
100g self raising flour
200g rhubarb puree, made by cutting the stems up, washing, putting into a pan with 75g sugar and simmering until soft.
Zest and juice or 1 orange
1 - Pre-heat the oven to 180C/GM4.
2 - In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Stir in the vanilla essence and then stir in the eggs one by one.
3 - Fold in the almonds and polenta. Sieve in the flour and fold in along with the orange zest and juice and 2 tbsp of the rhubarb puree until you have a soft batter.
4 - Pour into a lined cake tin with a removable base. Top with the remaining rhubarb puree. Bake on the centre shelf for 50-60 minutes until golden brown. If it starts to catch too soon, cover loosely with baking paper.
5 - Rest and allow to cool.