Forced rhubarb season is upon us. Regulars will know my obsession with rhubarb so we don’t need to go over it again. Suffice to say that every year, when the thin, pink stems arrive in the shops I am never, ever, short of new ideas for using them. This week I made this hazelnut (though it could just as easily have been walnut) and rhubarb cake, inspired by a Nigel Slater plum cake recipe. It’s super quick to make and so delicious that its short shelf life (it goes soggy after 48 hours) won’t be a problem because you will have eaten every crumb on the day you bake it.

You can also quick pickle rhubarb, as I did for last week’s supper club, to serve with mackerel pate. Just dissolve equal amounts of cider vinegar and sugar over a low heat, remove from the heat and cool, then add chopped rhubarb and leave for 5 minutes. On which note, the next supper club is Friday 28th February. Menu and book info here.

(Incidentally, things might be a little quiet on the blog this year – as demonstrated by my first post of 2020 being in mid-Feb. I’ll aim to blog every fortnight, but if you don’t find me here, you will still find me busy on Instagram with new recipes.)

Rhubarb and hazelnut cake

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Serves 8

Rhubarb and hazelnut cake

This cake is a doddle. Simple to make, but beautiful to adorn either an afternoon tea table or as a dinner party dessert.

  • 150g butter, softened
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 75g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 75g hazelnuts or walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 4 stems rhubarb, chopped until 2cm pieces
  • Icing sugar, to serve.
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Line a 21cm cake tin with baking parchment.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy, about two minutes in a mixer. Gradually add the eggs, beating hard before adding the next glug. Add the flour, baking powder and ground almonds and fold gently to combine. Finally, stir in the nuts.
  3. Spoon the mixture into the cake tin and smooth out the top. Arrange the rhubarb pieces on top of the cake. Pack them in nice and tightly, fitting in as many as you can without them overlapping.
  4. Bake in the oven for 45 - 60 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool in the tin the dust with icing sugar and serve.
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