I originally made this cake using plums, beautiful blood-red plums from right here in Tasmania of course and on the same day my friends visited from their Tunbridge abode with another variety of plums that they had stewed, not sure of the variety but they were more of a tomato red hue. We ended up serving a splodge of the stewed plums alongside the slice of cake and it was all livened with a quality Tasmanian pure vanilla ice-cream. The reason this cake came out the first time like a tart is that I put less flour in it which made it flatter and I also poured some of the plum sauce over the top before baking, so it was quite moist, in fact the centre was similiar to the moistness of ‘frangipane’, the almond filling base of many tarts.
The rhubarb version is my latest adaption and I added some flaked almonds on top. The rhubarb came directly from the organic farm of our friends garden at Avoca, so I am staying on track with as many ingredients from this state as possible. This time I carefully measured the flour and it turned out closer to a tea cake and lasts around 3 days.
I cut the rhubarb into lengths 100 cm and placed in an oven proof ceramic dish and sprinkled over 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp quatre epices (the French 4 basic cake and cookie spices) and about 2 cups honey. Keep in mind I cooked the whole bunch that you see in the basket. I added about 1/4 cup water only. I covered the rhubarb with foil and roasted for around half an hour in a pre-heated oven at 200 c. Let it cool in the dish.
2 large eggs – organic of course
175 g caster sugar, plus more for sprinkling on top of cake before it goes in oven
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
85 g unsalted butter
75 ml milk
125 g plain flour
2 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup caster sugar
4 stalks rhubarb, roasted in oven
Here is the method:
Preheat oven to 200 c. Line the base and sides of a 24 cm round springform cake tin with baking paper.
Bring out the electric mixer here because you need to mix the eggs and sugar for a good 5 minutes or more until it is well mixed and creamy looking.
In a small saucepan, melt the butter, just before it melts, add the milk, this will help you to avoid burnt butter.
Sift the dry ingredients and add to the electric mixer whilst mixing, stopping the machine to check all the sides of the bowl. is all. Don’t over beat here but make sure the lumps are gone.
Now this is why you must preheat and line your tin in advance.
Quickly put the mixture into the cake tin and place the fruit carefully over the top, it may sink in so a fancy pattern is not necessary although try to keep the fruit evenly distributed. With the plum version I poured just a little of the juice over the cake. If you are using flaked almonds like I have in the picture, sprinkle the sugar first then add the almonds.
Place in the oven for 10 minutes on the 200 c and put a timer on. Lower the heat to 180 c and bake for around 20-25 minutes. Use a skewer to check if the cake set in the middle. Remove from oven, cool in the tin and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving. Plenty of fresh cream on the side is a must. We also added some rhubarb on the side. Roz