We are properly into Autumn now so I am happily breaking out the big soft scarves, bookmarking all my favorite winter warmer dinners and planning all the deserts I can enjoy with a generous serving of warm custard as an extra indulgence. Stewed fruit, crumbles, pies, cobblers anything warm, puddingy and comforting that is what I am looking for to match this crisp cool weather.
My boyfriends Mum has a garden I truly envy, she can grow anything there from cabbage to courgettes and is very generous with the harvest. This year she had a bumper crop of rhubarb and gifted me huge bundle of pink and green streaked stalks. Not wanting to waste any bit of this bounty I washed, chopped and froze what I didn’t use so on a day a month later when I really wanted desert I had a stash of fruit ready to use.
Crumbles are always lovely but I am a massive fan of fruit sponges, apple squares and the like so this Rachel Allen recipe combining fruit, sponge and crumble was exactly what I was looking for and happily worked really well with gluten free flour.
Rachel Allen Rhubarb Crumble Cake adapted for Gluten Free
Pre heat the oven to GAs 4, 180, 350f
Butter and line a 9″ loose bottomed tin
For the rhubarb filling
400 grams rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 2 to 3cm chunks
100 grams light soft brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Place the rhubarb, sugar and ginger in a saucepan with 2 tablespoons of water and simmer on a low heat, with the lid on for about four to six minutes.
You want the rhubarb to be just cooked but not too soft.
There was a lot of juice at this stage and as gluten free flour is very high in starch I was worried that it would absorb too much of the juice and end up stodgy and damp rather than beautifully moist, to avoid this I strained the juice and poured it back in to the pot, simmering over a low heat until it had reduced down a little to a light syrup. Allow both the syrup and the rhubarb to cool.
100 grams Doves Farm gluten free plain flour
1/2 teaspoon gluten free baking powder
75 grams cold butter, cubed
75 grams light soft brown sugar
25 g flaked almonds
Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl,
Using your fingertips rub in the butter until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs
Use a fork to stir in the sugar and flaked almonds
Place the bowl with the crumble topping in the fridge to chill while you start the sponge
100 gram softened butter
100 grams soft light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons of milk
175 gram Doves Farm plain flour (or you can use GF self raising flour)
pinch of salt
3/4 teaspoon of gluten free baking powder
Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl or in an electric mixer until soft and fluffy.
Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then add in the ginger and milk beating until combined
Sift over the flour, salt and baking powder and fold into the cake batter.
Spoon the batter into the tin and smooth it out evenly
Place the cooled cooked rhubarb on top of the sponge and pour over the cooled syrup.
Spread the crumble topping over the rhubarb and place the tine in the pre-heated oven
Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until golden and cooked in the centre
Leave the the cake to cool a bit before removing the tin and placing on a serving plate. Serve this puddingy cake slightly warm or at room temperature with some whipped cream, vanilla ice cream or lashings of warm custard.