PHOTOGRAPHY: SUECH AND BECK/ RECIPE: CLARE KNIVETT
The great thing about baking is that it is a science and once you’ve got the basics covered you can play a little. For example, sponges tend to have equal parts butter, sugar and flour to a ratio of egg, once you’ve found a great base sponge, like this one, you can swap out the fruit, zests and icings. For instance raspberries, cherries or blueberries would be great in this cake, so don’t be put off if you don’t like rhubarb, choose your soft fruit and get baking!
1 cup or 2 sticks (225g) soft unsalted butter
1 cup + 1 Tbsp (225g) caster sugar
4 medium eggs, beaten
1 1/4 cups (150g) plain/all purpose flour
1/2 cup (75g) polenta
1 heaped tsp baking powder
5 stalks, about 1 1/2 cups (200g) rhubarb cut into 2 cm chunks
2 oranges zested
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup (60g) Icing/powdered sugar
Trim and cut the rhubarb into bite sized chunks ( about 2-3 cm ) and toss in the tablespoon of sugar.
Grease and line a deep 8” (20cm) round baking tin and preheat the oven to 180c. In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter and the sugar together until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping down the sides halfway through.
Gradually incorporate the eggs, one by one, beating to combine
In a separate bowl combine the flour, polenta and baking powder and stir to insure the baking powder is evenly distributed. Then gently fold this into the butter mixture
Fold in the rhubarb along with the zest of two oranges
Pour into the baking tin and evenly distribute the mixture. Bake for 45 - 55 minutes or until golden and a skewer comes out clean.
Juice ½ your lemon and combine with the icing sugar to create a drizzle and pour over the cake.