An army marches on its stomach. No doubt this cliché is true. It is also true for me and writing. I’m productive when I’m reasonably replete – not snooze-full nor a snack short of satisfied.
Confession number one. Baking is one of my top four distractions from writing. It is up there with walking, the garden and a Test match.
Confession number two. I have a sweet tooth so puddings, cakes and buns have a great attraction.
Puts those together and we come to the reason for this post. A simple to make, yet great pudding that, if it survives overnight, becomes a cake to die for. For which to die? Hmm is that the correct grammatical form. Feels a bit like my first gear box – clunky.
The principle ingredient is rhubarb – a favourite for its flexibility and not easily suppressed flavour. Even if you turn usually your nose up at rhubarb – don’t, give the beauty a chance – you will love this.
25g/1oz butter, melted
100g/4oz golden caster sugar [you can reduce this sugar by at least a quarter if you wish]
100g/4oz mixed nuts and berries, roughly chopped
1 tsp cinnamon
100g/4oz butter, softened
250g/9oz dark muscovado sugar [nb: we often use light brown sugar and only 6oz, and it works fine]
1 large egg
225g/8oz plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
380 ml soured cream
300g/10oz rhubarb, cut into 1cm pieces [nb any firm fruit works well e.g. cooking apples, pears, or a mix]
1 Preheat oven to 180C/gas 4/fan 160C. Line a 33x23cm/13x9in deep baking tin with baking paper.
2. Mix melted butter with nuts, caster sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and set aside
3. Beat softened butter with muscovado sugar and egg. When smooth and creamy, stir in flour and bicarbonate of soda, salt and soured cream in that order. Add the fruit last and stir well
4. Pour into lined baking tin and sprinkle with topping. Bake for 35-40 mins or until a skewer comes out clean.
5. Serve immediately as a pudding or leave to cool (our preference) and cut into squares and have with tea or coffee. Keeps for a few days in an airtight tin (in theory – it never lasts long enough here).