Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sarah: Iron Chef Blogger Challenge #1- Rhubarb

Rhubarb Pudding Cakes

1/4 cup (50ml) water
1½ tsp (7 ml) cornstarch
1 cup (250 ml) sugar divided
3 cups (750 ml) chopped fresh rhubarb stalks
1 cup (250 ml) all-purpose flour
1¾ tsp (8 ml) baking powder
1/2 tsp (2 ml) salt
1 large egg
1/2 cup (125 ml) milk
1/2 cup (125 ml) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 tsp (5 ml) pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 400°f (200°c), ensuring the rack is in the middle. Butter 4 individual 1-cup (250-ml) ramekins.

Mix together water, cornstarch and half of the sugar in a small pot, then add therhubarb. Simmer, stirring constantly for about three minutes. Remove from heat.

In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and the remaining sugar.

In a second bowl, whisk the egg, milk, melted butter and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk until just combined. It will make a thick batter.

Reserving ½cup (125 ml) of the rhubarb mixture, divide the rest of the fruit and syrup among the ramekins. Spoon the batter evenly into each dish over therhubarb. Top each ramekin with a portion of the remaining rhubarb syrup mix.

Bake until a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean and the tops are slightly golden, about 25 to 30 minutes. Cool slightly and then serve.


I got to pick the ingredient and rule this week for Iron Chef Blogger Challenge. Having seen rhubarb a lot, but never worked with it or eaten it, I thought that it would be a great way to start off the competition. The only way I had ever heard of anyone eating rhubarb before was in pies, so I knew right away that I would make this week's rule "No Pies".

Did you know rhubarb is seasonal? I didn't. Wikipedia didn't either. I spent quite a lot of time looking for rhubarb this week, and actually had to drive 20 minutes north of the city to get to a grocery that even had any (and frozen at that).

I love baking. More than math homework. More than Gray's Anatomy. Almost more than getting my nails done.

And I love cupcakes. More than real cake. More than chicken. More than cucumbers. So when I saw this recipe on a blog I frequent, Patient in the Pantry, it stuck in my head as what I should make this week.

But no. No first I looked around and found a rhubarb and potato thing that I had even intention of making as to expand my cooking experience. I made a shopping list and everything, but I just couldn't do it. I ripped up the list, laughed maniacally and did a little happy dance in front of my oven.

So I love the cake on these, but found the rhubarb a little too tart to enjoy without a big chunk of cake. How to fix it? I'd recommend adding a little sugar over the rhubarb mixture before putting the batter in.

Also, don't fill the cups up too much. I used 6 ramekins and almost all of Mine overflowed. I'd say fill the cups less than 2/3 full with the rhubarb mixture and then put the batter in.

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