Rhubarb and Custard Cakes

Posted on January 14, 2012


The concept of these cakes popped up inside my brain one night whilst I was trying, unsuccessfully, to get to sleep.

My best ideas often appear that way.

I wanted to use the new season British Timperley Rhubarb that had just appeared in the shops (as suggested by Claire) and it made sense to add a little nostalgia by teaming it with custard. I was also inspired by the myriad of uses that Vanessa found for rhubarb in Prepped.

There is a spoonful of custard powder added to the basic cake batter, this makes them vanilla rich and golden. Then there is a liberal sprinkling of freshly roasted vanilla scented rhubarb on the top. To double up the flavour sensation I made two drizzle icings, one with syrup from the rhubarb and the other with more custard.

Note 1: You will only need about 1/4 of the rhubarb you cook here, but you can turn the rest into a crumble, pie or fool.

Note 2: You won’t need the full amount of icing that I made either, I got carried away. Make half this amount or feel free to drizzle it on other things you find around the house.

Note 3: The rhubarb will yield a good 350mls of glorious pink syrup. This is a true food of the gods and should be poured onto anything and everything.

Tonight I shall be making some of the syrup into a Rhubarb-tini, (just you try and stop me) George just had some mixed with soda as a refreshing drink, and I may even pour some over clotted cream ice cream for tonight’s dessert.

Cooking the Rhubarb

  • 750g Fresh Chopped Timperley Rhubarb. Skinny is good.
  • 250g Caster Sugar
  • 1 split Vanilla Pod

Put the chopped rhubarb in a shallow oven proof dish, sprinkle on the sugar and add the split vanilla pod. Cover with foil and bake at 180 degrees c for 30-40 minutes. Cooking it this way keeps the pieces whole and stops it being stringy. When it has cooled drain the juice into a jug and use the pieces of soft fruit for the cakes.

The Cakes

  • 125g Soft Butter
  • 100g Caster Sugar
  • 125g Self Raising Flour
  • 25g Custard Powder
  • 2 Large Eggs

Cream the butter, then add the sugar and beat until light in colour. Mix the custard powder with the flour and add this to the butter and sugar, add the eggs and beat well.

Place a piece of baking parchment in the base of 6-8 small buttered tins. Sprinkle some of the baked rhubarb on each cake, or stir it in to the mix if you prefer. I will add some more to the mix next time to give the cakes extra tang.

Bake for around 15 minutes at 175 degrees until they are golden brown. They should tip out of the tins easily after they have cooled for 5 minutes. NB: These would work just as well as cup cakes.

Custard Drizzle Icing

  • 1 tblsp Custard Powder
  • 4 tblsp Icing Sugar
  • a splash of water

Rhubarb Drizzle Icing

  • 4 tblsp Icing Sugar
  • Some syrup from the rhubarb dish

Mix the icings until smooth and drizzle over the cakes with a spoon.

Lick the spoon.