This Rhubarb Curd and Rose Ice-cream is a really quick and easy ice-cream which manages to taste both familiar and exotic and its soft pink colour looks wonderful! Rhubarb and rose go very well together and each enhances the flavour of the other. The sharpness of the rhubarb, the sweet floweriness of the rose plus soft billowing cream is a winning combination. Don’t overdo the rose flavouring as you want it to balance and not over-power the taste of the rhubarb. The ice-cream should make you think of an English summer garden – with a whisper of rose-water giving a hint of exotic Arabian Nights rather than a full-on Fry’s Turkish Delight flashback!
Whisk and bowl. This recipe is a breeze using an Ice Cream Maker but you can still make it if you don’t have one. Just put the ice-cream mixture into a freezer proof container and put into the freezer. The air in the whipped cream will mean that your ice-cream still has a good texture.
Add a few drops of pink food colouring if you feel the mixture needs to be pinker! This won’t be necessary if you have already added colouring to home-made Curd.
Put the ice-cream mixture in your ice-cream maker, process until thickened and transfer to a freezer-proof container and store in your freezer until required. Alternatively, as outlined above, you can put the ice-cream mixture straight into the freezer if you don’t have an ice-cream maker.
And that’s it – enjoy!
Keywords: rhubarb ice-cream, rhubarb and rose ice-cream
This is a simple Victoria Sandwich cake, flavoured with vanilla, and filled with a mixture of Rhubarb Curd and whipped cream. It is very easy to make and can be used as a pudding or eaten at tea-time or with morning coffee. The tartness of the rhubarb goes very well with the buttery cake and the smooth, rich taste of vanilla.
1 x 21 cm or containers (I have used a heart-shaped silicon container but round is fine!)
Set your oven to 180 degrees centigrade or Gas Mark 4.
Cream the butter with the caster sugar. (I usually soften the butter for about 30 seconds in the microwave first as it makes it much easier!)
Gradually add the eggs to the butter and sugar mixture. If it looks as if it is going to curdle, add some of the self-raising flour.
Once the eggs have been incorporated add the rest of the self-raising flour.
Add the milk and the vanilla extract. It really makes a difference if you use a good quality vanilla extract – as opposed to vanilla essence – as this will give it a much more intense flavour.
Grease your Victoria Sandwich tin or container and then add the cake mixture.
Bake your cake in the oven for around 30 minutes. It is done when it is golden brown, springy to the touch and has shrunk away from the edge of the tin. You can test it by inserting a skewer in the middle of the cake – if it comes out cleanly with no mixture attached, your cake is done.
Allow your cake to cool on a rack before removing it from the tin or container.
Once the cake is cool, slice it in half horizontally (I find a bread knife is good for doing this).
Spread the Rhubarb Curd on one half of the cake followed by the whipped cream and then put the other half of the cake on top.
Dust the cake with icing sugar by shaking a small amount through a sieve onto the top.
You will need to keep the cake in the fridge if not using immediately as it contains cream and Rhubarb Curd. If stored in the fridge, remove it around half an hour before eating to allow it to come up to room temperature.
Fruit curds are a great way of capturing the flavour of a wide range of fruits and work best with strong-tasting ingredients – such as lemon, lime, passion fruit or rhubarb – where the sharpness is softened by the butter and eggs. The method and ingredients for a fruit curd are very similar to those for making custard – so when you make Rhubarb Curd you are making a kind or rhubarb and custard combination which is a taste classic! The taste is delicious – creamy and buttery with a zing of sharpness – and it is really easy to make.
Fruit curds, as well as being lovely simply spread on bread, are also a very versatile ingredient which can be stirred into yoghurt to make a quick pudding, used as a cake filling or provide a basis for a simple ice-cream.
Creamy Rhubarb Curd is fantastic spread on bread or as an ingredient in cakes and puddings.
800 g rhubarb
100 ml water
300 g caster sugar
4 tsp cornflour
50 g butter
A few drops of pink food colouring (optional)
Wash the rhubarb stalks thoroughly. Cut into pieces of around 2 cm.
Put the rhubarb pieces into your heavy saucepan with 100 ml of water. Heat until the mixture is simmering and cook for around 5 minutes until the rhubarb is soft and mushy.
Now you can either strain the rhubarb mixture through a sieve to remove the fibres and use the strained juice to make your curd. Alternatively, you can blend the mixture in a blender or with a stick blender and use the thicker puree to make your curd. Allow the rhubarb mixture to cool slightly.
Beat the eggs in a bowl and then add the caster sugar and cornflour which should stop the mixture curdling and turning into scrambled eggs!
Now, gradually pour the rhubarb mixture into the bowl and combine it with the egg mixture. Add a few drops of pink food colouring if you wish – if you don’t do this, your curd will not look so pretty but will taste just as good!
Put the mixture back into your heavy saucepan, add the butter and heat very gently for around 10-15 minutes until it has thickened to a custard-like consistency. You will need to stir it often and keep an eye on it.
Remove the mixture from the saucepan and pour into sterilised jam jars – it will fill two medium-sized jars. It must be kept in the fridge once cooled and will last for around a week.
You can sterilise your jam-jar by washing it in warm, soapy water, rinsing well and then drying off for 15 minutes in an oven set at 140C/120C fan/gas 1.
I make a lot of Upside Down Cakes – they are really versatile and can be used as puddings or are great mid-morning with a cup of coffee or with afternoon tea! I usually use them a lot as puddings as they are very quick and easy to do and are fantastic, served with cream or ice-cream, at the end of a meal. Rhubarb Upside Down Cake tends to go down well with those who have past form as rhubarb-haters (such as my eldest son) as the topping is effectively a jam and so is less astringent than in some other dishes and therefore more palatable.
In the past, I have been a bit ambivalent about rhubarb. On the one hand, I liked its sharp/sweet flavour but I also had a lot of unfortunate memories from my school days of pink mush shrouded in lumpy custard… The turning point in my relationship with rhubarb was when we moved into our current house a few years ago and found a huge rhubarb plant in the middle of one of the flower beds. Over several years, I did my best to kill it and, when this failed, to move it, as I wanted to plant pretty flowers! It resisted all my attempts at destruction and, in the end, in a spirit of defeat, I decided to start trying to use it and looked for tasty recipes. I am now quite pleased that I failed to get rid of it, although it still looks a bit odd in the middle of the flower bed, and have adapted a lot of my favourite recipes, including the one for Upside Down Cake, to include rhubarb.
You will need a cast iron tarte-tatin dish or a cast iron frying pan which can be used on the hob and also can be put in the oven
Rhubarb Upside Down Cake can be served as a pudding with cream or ice cream or as a cake with morning coffee or afternoon tea (or anytime you fancy, frankly!)
For the rhubarb topping:
300 g rhubarb
180 g caster sugar
50 g butter
For the cake:
125 g butter
125 g caster sugar
125 g self-raising flour
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon milk
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/gas mark 4.
Wash the rhubarb stalks thoroughly. Cut into small pieces of around 1 cm.
Put the rhubarb pieces, 180 g caster sugar and 50 g butter into your tarte-tatin dish or frying pan and put on a low heat for around 15 minutes. The rhubarb will soften and, initially release a lot of moisture, but by the end of the time the mixture should be syrupy and jam-like in consistency. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the mixture to cool slightly.
Make the cake batter by creaming together the 125 g butter with the 125 g sugar. Add the eggs gradually to ensure the mixture does not curdle. Then add the 125 g self-raising flour followed by the 1 tablespoon of milk.
Spoon the cake batter on top of the syrupy mixture in your tarte-tatin dish or frying pan.
Put the dish into the oven for around 30 minutes. At the end of this time, the cake should be light brown and springy to the touch.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for around 5 minutes. Then, put a plate over the pan, turn it upside down and remove the pan so that the cake is on the plate rhubarb-side upwards. Don’t leave it any longer than this or it will be hard to turn it out as the jammy mixture will solidify as it cools and glue the cake to the pan!
You can either serve immediately when it is warm or leave to cool to room temperature.
Keywords: rhubarb cake
See my other recipes for using Rhubarb to make flavoured Gin and Cordial
This is a companion to the recipe for Rhubarb Gin and offers an alternative for those who do not like gin or who do not drink alcohol. Children love it too although sometimes more when they are not told that it has rhubarb in it! There are many recipes for Rhubarb Cordial but this is the very simplest and requires minimal skill or time to make although you do need to leave it overnight before you can enjoy it. It is very versatile and can be used to make non-alcoholic drinks or used as a flavouring in alcoholic cocktails. It can also be used as a flavouring in cooking when making cakes and puddings. As with the Rhubarb Gin, you can add additional flavours to your taste – some are suggested in the recipe but feel free to improvise!
Sweet and zesty Rhubarb Cordial is an easy way of capturing the flavour of rhubarb for use in drinks and food recipes.
1 kg rhubarb stalks
600 g caster sugar
1 litre of water
Juice of 1 lemon
If you wish to try different flavours you could add one of the following additions: 1 vanilla pod or other spices (cardamon and star anise go well with rhubarb) or 5 slices of fresh root ginger
Wash the rhubarb stalks thoroughly. Cut into 3 cm pieces.
Put the rhubarb pieces, sugar, water and lemon juice in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Then allow to simmer for 10 minutes until the rhubarb is very soft.
Take the saucepan off the heat and allow the mixture to cool.
Strain the mushy juices through a muslin-lined funnel into a bowl or jug. It takes a while for the juice to filter through and the process can be done overnight in your fridge.
The juice that has filtered through the funnel is your Rhubarb Cordial and is ready to use.
The Rhubarb Cordial will keep in a sterilised bottle in your fridge for around a month. Alternatively, you can freeze it – best to do this in ice-cube trays – and it will keep for up to six months.
To sterilise your bottle, you can wash in warm soapy water, rinse thoroughly and then dry off for around 15 minutes in an oven set to 140C/120C fan/gas 1.
Rhubarb Cordial is very versatile and can be combined with soda or tonic to make a non-alcoholic drink or added to a glass of prosecco or added to gin or vodka as a flavouring for cocktails. It can also be poured over vanilla ice-cream to make a quick pudding and used as a culinary ingredient to add flavour.