Do you like rhubarb? How do you use it? Do you like rhubarb cake? That’s a must here in Chateau Learner, a yearly tradition. Rhubarb is rich in oxalic acid, too much of that will interfere with your calcium uptake. Once in a while though, it doesn’t harm otherwise healthy people. Where we live, which is somewhat in the middle of Germany, rhubarb is the first thing that can be harvested in the garden. Technically it is a vegetable, not a fruit, but it is treated and cooked like a fruit. We look forward to the season every year. We have two healthy rhubarb patches and we harvest them from beginning of May until the end of May. The longer the season gets, the more oxalic acid gets produced, so, after about a month or so, we let the plant grow, flower and otherwise go about its planty ways.
Baking rhubarb cake is always a bit of a challenge. Do you make rhubarb pie, or cake, or anything similar? I feel always challenged, because our plants, though rather mild in taste, are very juicy and, while baking, produce too much juice for a nice cake. I’ve been trying out this and that until I could adjust a few standard recipes in a way we like it, and it’s not too soggy. Here is our favourite recipe (in metric):
500 g rhubarb (washed and diced)
3 Tablespoons sugar
150 g flour
75 g corn starch
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
150 g butter or margarine
100 g sugar
1 Tablespoon vanillin sugar (or a bit vanilla extract)
2 whole eggs
For the meringue:
3 egg whites
1 pinch of salt
100 g sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Whip egg whites, sugar, salt and lemon juice until very firm. — I usually make that first, because I don’t need to clean the mixer and then can use it as it is for the batter.
Thoroughly mix butter or margarine with eggs, and egg yolks, vanillin sugar, and sugar until creamy. Mix flour with starch and baking powder and slowly add to the mixture. Spread batter in a baking dish. Add rhubarb to the top evenly, slightly press into the batter.
Bake for 40 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius.
After that, add the whipped egg white, spread on top. Bake for another 20 minutes, if necessary reduce the heat a bit.
Enjoy. If you like it sweeter, add more sugar. If you like it less sweet, reduce sugar even more. If you like more rhubarb, add a bit more. 1 portion has approx. 300 kcal.