Red Rhubarb Cake
A few days ago was my birthday! Did I mention I love to celebrate! Here goes the story how the rhubarb conquer my heart!!!!
Do you had an excellent weekend? Hope you have a great start of the week. Rhubarb resembles red celery, but is considered to be a member of the fruit family. I checked in history books – Rhubarb has been used for centuries for medical purposes. If talking about cooking – we can make a variety of foods, starting from desserts, jams, jellies, sauces till juices and cocktails. Rhubarb provides its endless possibilities in food world every day. And its season here in Latvia starts from May till the end of June. This great plant grows in northern climates and it is a “superfood”. After affinity it is close to the sorrel and buckwheat. Rhubarb grows as one of the first plants in our gardens. With this beautiful and delicious magic starts the local season.
Rhubarb is an ambassador of home taste. I always enjoy cooking it. The smell… sweet, sweet… and this plant brings back childhood memories. I ate it straight from the garden through sugar-basin.
Sometimes I read recipes to learn valuable skills, but mostly my both grannies gave me sense and skills of cooking. During early childhood my countryside grandmother used to bake pancakes, pies and bred. She always had especially something tasty or pleasant to eat. And high added value of life in rural areas – all goodies in the garden. My city grandmother also cooked and baked, and she wrote her cookbook, private baking notes and tips.
Today I will let you to enjoy photo story – how rhubarb cake was made. I was very happy to enjoy the making process.
May recipe was very simple. My choices was yeast dough for a stronger base. But you can experiment and make your own dough. Choose and grease a baking dish (could be square or round). I use the pan with removable sides. Then defrost the dough, if bought in the store. Other possibility – you can make it at home. Then spread the dough in to form pan and bake for 8-10min. I included greaseproof paper and on top goes peas, so the dough remain flat, because then it can inflate and crack. When the dough cooked 8-10min take it out of the oven, let it cool down and make the filling.
Put butter, sugar and lemon juice in a pot, heat this mixture. Meanwhile 3 large rhubarb stalks cut into smaller pieces and put them into the hot butter mixture. It took me 5 minutes to heat it since put together. The rhubarb under the heat becomes softer, also butter and sugar gives a caramelized effect. Orange juice is there only for the taste. You can add lemon or lime juice. It is up to you.
I like cottage cheese/curdu, but still rarely eat cow’s milk products (cottage cheese is noticeably wetter and usually you should choose one you prefer better). This time I added chia seeds into the cottage cheese. Pour off the juice from heated rhubarb, let it cool down 5minutes and add it to cottage cheese. Help the juice combine in.
And then comes in The Beatles with “Strawberry Fields Forever” – so prepare frozen berries. Tip – if frozen is your choice (as I did), make sure all moisture is drained from berries. TIP – blueberries and strawberries can be added later, after you poured curd layer on the dough. It is the recommendation to achieve a nice effect when the pie will be cut to pieces. Then the berries will be evenly lined over the filling. I usually point single berry individually berry into the filling. Blueberries are my favourite – they keep shape when baked, and won’t explode during baking!!!
In a bowl, whisk 3 egg whites with an icing sugar. Add icing sugar in 3 parts. Oh, well – that was a final touch before baking! TIP – You can add something for the taste, such as lemon zest or vanilla seeds. Or nothing! Because it matters what is going to be on top of your pie as a decoration. You can use for example blueberries, chocolate, lemon pieces etc.
Bake it for 20-25 minutes, till crust begins to form and it starts to brown. Then it will be more powerful to take the cottage cheese mix.
Happy baking, friends!
All photos made by me.
Portrait – author Emils Skrivelis (http://www.emils.lv/)