Sunday is my favourite day of the week. Things are slower! Our family ritual is to have a cooked breakfast – either pancakes or bacon & eggs – in our pj’s.
The aroma in our kitchen is reminiscent of a café with brewed Campos coffee, and the weekend papers are sprawled out on the dining table leaving little room for our plates. It’s so relaxing that before we know it its midday and we’re still in our nightwear.
Additionally, it’s the day were hubby & I alternate in selecting & cooking recipes, for our evening meal, from one of our many cookbooks (we’re cookbook obsessed). We started this tradition many moons ago and have simply continued the custom. The rules are simple – either an entree or main meal is to be recreated as well as a dessert. All recipes must be selected from one of our cookbooks. I am always eager for my turn as I love flicking through our books in search of new fare.
Not too long ago, on a cold winter’s Sunday, on my shift, I opted for one of my favourite cookery book – Belinda Jeffery’s “Utterly Delicious Simple Food”.
True to the name, the dishes in this book are “utterly delicious” and very simple to prepare. Dinner was a hearty ‘Quick Borlotti Bean & Brown Rice Soup’ while dessert was ‘Rhubarb, Strawberry & Lemon Pudding’.
I decided to share the pudding recipe with you today as I strongly believe you would love to add it to your dessert repertoire! Not only is it scrumptious, but easy and quick to prepare.
Rhubarb is in season at the moment. Its rosy-red colour and tartness make it an ideal accompaniment to sweet dishes, especially this pudding recipe. Consequently, rhubarb & strawberry is a perfect baking pair – the tartness of the rhubarb with the sweetness of the strawberries. The addition of the lemon juice and zest in the cake batter lifts the rhubarb flavour and adds a real zing to the whole dish.
When preparing rhubarb, remember to always remove and discard the leaves as they are poisonous, and trim the brownish base. If you don’t like lemon, you could substitute it with orange. That would work too, just not so zingy!
Once the pudding is ready and out of the oven, dust it lightly with pure icing sugar. Serve it warm with whipped cream, a dollop of double cream or (if you’re brave in cold weather) a scoop of ice cream.
Rhubarb & Strawberry are a perfect baking pair - the tartness of the rhubarb with the sweetness of the strawberries. The addition of the lemon juice & zest in the cake batter lifts the flavour of the rhubarb and adds a real zing to the whole dish.
450g Rhubarb, thoroughly washed and cut into 3 cm pieces
250g Strawberries, hulled and halved
75g (1/3 cup) castor sugar
1 tsp Vanilla Bean Extract
2 tblsp flaked almonds
Pure icing sugar (for dusting)
Softly whipped cream, dollop double cream or vanilla-bean ice-cream, to serve
160g Self-raising flour
¼ tsp fine salt
2 eggs, at room temperature
120g Castor sugar
120g Unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into small chunks
Finely grated zest of 2 large lemons
1 tsp vanilla bean extract
60ml (¼ cup) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Preheat oven to 180c.
- Lightly butter a 1.25 litre ceramic, glass or enameled ovenproof dish. Place the rhubarb and strawberries into the dish, and give it a gentle shake to even them out. Sprinkle with the castor sugar and drizzle vanilla over the top – mix around and set aside the dish.
- To make the topping, put the flour and salt in a bowl and mix together. Place aside.
- Place the eggs and the castor sugar in bowl of food processor and whiz for 1 minute.
- Add the butter and whiz for another minute. Make sure to stop and scrap down the sides occasionally. The mixture may look curdled at this stage, but don’t worry, it will be fine once the flour is added.
- Add the lemon zest and the vanilla, then pulse in the flour mixture alternately with the lemon juice and milk to form a soft batter.
- Pour the batter over the rhubard and strawberries and smooth it out evenly, then scatter the almonds over the top.
- Bake the pudding for 45-50 minutes until the topping is golden and set – press down gently on the middle of the pudding with your fingers and it should feel slightly springy. Also test with a skewer or small knife inserted in the topping and it should come out clean.
- Remove the pudding from the oven and dust it lightly with pure icing sugar. Leave it to settle for at least 15 minutes before serving (it’s lovely when it’s just warm). Serve with softly whipped cream, a dollop of double cream or ice-cream.