Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Rhubarb Upside-Down Brown Sugar Cake ~ Baking Chez Moi

Per Nana~
Believe it or not, I have never made an upside down cake before.
 This recipe intrigued me for some reason, probably because of the
 rhubarb, which is our new favorite fruit of summer.
The whole recipe came together quite well and the aroma even before the 
oven cooking was wonderful, it must have been the brown sugar and vanilla.
I did have to add more baking time because after 25 minutes it was not totally 
baked. The cake came away from the pan easily and the rhubarb looked good 
and stayed in place. Unfortunately, after it cooled and I attempted to slice some, 
I found the middle of the cake to be a bit soggy.  The outside portions and the 
fruit had a wonderful taste but I was so disappointed with the rest of the cake. 
The only thing to do is test my oven, it is possible that the temps are off and it 
was not hot enough. With all the baking we have ahead of us, this will be first 
on my list of things to do - pronto.
Per Tricia~
I was away for the Memorial Day weekend when I realized that this cake was
 "due" the following day. I only had an 8 inch Springform pan so I crossed my 
fingers that this would neither leak not alter the cooking time too much. 
Near the farm stand- view of Stratton Mountain
I was also delighted to find the fresh rhubarb at a local Vermont farm stand 
and counted myself even luckier that they same shop had rhubarb jelly. 
Duttons Farm Stand 
The proud owner suggested I photograph her beautiful asparagus too !
 The elusive "Fiddlehead Ferns"- very seasonal. Best to buy them because picking the wrong one could yield a carcinogenic variety.  Local restaurants relish in offering these as a delicious side dish.
Were it not for this recipe, I wouldn't have 
looked twice at that flavor and it was quite delicious. 
My cooking time was also way off, in part because of the pan size and I think
 I also did not have my rhubarb drained enough or "al dente" enough. 

It smelled amazing and the top was such a golden brown that I foolishly took
 it out after an extra 10 minutes, without using a tester. After flipping it onto
 the serving platter I found the bottom to be under cooked. As in gooey. 
Figuring I had little to lose, I just put the entire platter back into the oven
 at 300 degrees for what ended up another 35 minutes. My husband had 
questioned the rhubarb as soon as he saw it in the kitchen. His eyes opened 
when I mentioned cake but because he was surprised no other fruit was going
 in - "you usually have to mix it with another fruit, no ? Isn't it pretty bad by itself ?" 
I couldn't recall the last time I had rhubarb so this commentary had me anxious. 
And for no reason. 
It was a lovely, sweet cake and wonderful way to enjoy the season.
Hubby enjoyed it and proclaimed it "actually quite good !".
 All that jelly glaze and brown sugar was the perfect compliment. 

This marks another Tuesday recipe testing as we cook along with the "Tuesdays with Dorie" online group.  Please note that we do not post the recipes, per the group rules, but we do encourage others to RUN out and buy their own copy of Dorie Greenspan's "Baking Chez Moi".  Better yet, buy the book and JOIN THE GROUP ! www.TuesdaysWithDorie.wordpress.com 


  1. I love the idea of glazing it with more rhubarb (jelly)! Looks delicious -- both versions!

  2. The rhubarb jelly was a great find - it sounds delicious. Both cakes look great even though you had a few challenges to overcome. My upside-down cakes used to bake unevenly until someone recommended putting the pan on a baking stone for more even heating - works every time.

  3. Nana - what pan did you bake it in - looks like ceramic? Maybe it needed even more baking time? In any case, you both got your hands on some lovely rhubarb this week!

  4. Nana, my cake came out soggy in the middle, too, so I tossed it back in the oven. I think the juices decided to commandeer the cake! It turned out ok...and if it hadn't I would've just eaten around the soggy part. :)

  5. Nana, I'm sorry your cake didn't get cooked in the middle. I wonder if some rhubarb is juicier than others? Hopefully you got a taste of Tricia's cake. Have a nice week!

  6. Wow-I've never seen or heard of eating fiddlehead ferns before but now I totally want to try it. What a beautiful roadside stand. Interesting results on the rhubarb-I'm starting to wonder if there is just more moisture really fresh stalks.

  7. Your cake looks delicious! I love rhubarb too now after making this cake. So aromatic and sweet-tart.

  8. Nana, sorry this cake was disappointing for you - I found that it took way longer to bake than the recipe stated, and because of the moisture, it has hard to tell when it was done. Tricia, loving your farmgate photos and am happy that the cake worked well for you.

  9. Tricia love all your photos of the farmers market. I hope you enjoyed your weekend. Sorry both of your cakes came out a little wet but it sounds like they were delicious anyway.

  10. Nana - that's so disappointing when that happens. I wonder if your rhubarb was still pretty juicy?

    Tricia - love all your photos and farm finds. Your cake looks beautiful, too!