As we all know, lockdown living is tough. I’m hoping this upside-down rhubarb cake brightens up my day at least! It’s been almost a year now and if you’re also part of the critically vulnerable group like me you’ll know how repetitive it can all be. I’m fortunate enough to have gotten myself onto the Sainsbury’s delivery list so we’re good for food but ordering on line every week can be death-defyingly dull. Not actually seeing the fruit and veg, not being able to pick up a banana to check it for ripeness, it’s all pretty frustrating for a food lover.
So much so that we recently made a change to buy our fruit and veg from a local greengrocer supplier called Shaws. They don’t have a shop as such, it’s an on-line shop and then you go and pick it up. (Actually we’re fortunate enough that we put our order in through our local pub The Railway Tavern in Aby who place their own order and for those in the village that need the help. It’s been a revelation.
Firstly the quality of the fruit and veg is second to none and far superior (and quite considerably cheeper) that the supermarkets. Secondly the range of produce is excellent, plus it’s updated monthly depending on what’s in season. I was worried I’d only be able to get certain basics but the list is quite extensive. I would urge you all to seek out local producers and growers and find out what they’re offering.
It’s such a wonderful community around here and so many local community things have popped up all over the UK. I think if there’s one benefit to all this awfulness that COVID has brought and that’s the sense of community and how people have become more gracious and enterprising.
One of things I’ve really embraced is cooking more seasonally and I love that the seasons are marked by the appearance of things like blood oranges and forced Yorkshire rhubarb. I love it and celebrate it at every chance I get. This upside down rhubarb cake is just that.
One little tip, as you can see it’s not quite as pretty as it could be and that’s because, I left too many gaps in the rhubarb as I was making the pattern on the bottom of the cake tin.
for the cake
- 4 or 5 sticks of rhubarb, cut into chinks on the diagional.
- 150g caster sugar
- zest of 1 orange
- 150ml olive oil
- 3 large free-range eggs
- 170g greek yoghurt
- 125g self-raising flour (or plain flour with 1.5 teaspoons of baking powder)
- 75g ground almonds
Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin and sprinkle the base with a little brown sugar.
Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
Place the cut rhubarb in a ‘herringbone’ pattern onto the greased tin in a single layer. Try and make them as tight fitting as possible to avoid cake batter seeping through.
To make the sponge, beat the eggs, sugar, yoghurt, oil and zest until light and fluffy. This should take roughly 5 mins in a stand mixer. Then fold in the flour and ground almonds. Carefully pour the cake batter over the rhubarb in the bottom of the cake tin,
Bake for 35-40 mins, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the tin, then carefully remove it from the tin and turn it over onto a cooling rack. Peel back the baking paper from the bottom and leave to cool before serving.
Eat and of course, enjoy!