This was a very belated birthday cake for my rhubarb-loving husband, Larry. Both of us have finally recovered after over four weeks of a bronchial virus that put us out of commission for that long.
I had torn out a recipe for a rhubarb-almond cake from the April issue of Bon Appetit, meaning to try it long before the bronchitis hit. Larry’s mid-May birthday passed without a cake, let alone much of a celebration. Better late than never, I finally made it the end of the month.
It took me by surprise that the baking time suggested by the BA folks – 70 to 80 minutes – was way off. Fortunately, my intuition thought the time was excessive, so I set my timer for 50 minutes – and it was done! Since my oven runs a little hot, I suggest a baking time of 50-55 minutes in my version below.
Larry, always an honest critic, loved the cake but thought it needed more rhubarb. Next time, I’ll add a couple more stalks. A recipe that calls for two sticks of butter for a pretty small cake feels like one of Ina’s – aka The Butter Queen – so I plan on trying only one stick next time.
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ¾ cup white sugar
- 1 pound rhubarb, trimmed
- 1¼ cups white, unbleached flour
- ¾ cup unsalted roasted almonds
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup non-fat Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon white sparkling sugar
- Special Equipment:One 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Slice each rhubarb stalk into thirds. Set aside 6 of them, then cut the rest into ½-inch pieces.
- Using a food processor, combine the flour, almonds, baking powder and salt. Pulse until mixture feels sandy to the touch.
- Using either a standing or handheld mixer, beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla at medium speed for 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy. At the eggs, one at a time, and beat another 2 minutes.
- Reduce mixer speed to low, then gradually add the dry ingredients, next the yogurt. Beat until just blended, then use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides. Add the chopped rhubarb and mix again by hand.
- Scrape the batter into the tart pan, smooth with spatula. Place the 6 reserved long pieces of rhubarb on top of the tart in an attractive pattern. Sprinkle with sparkling sugar.
- Bake 50-55 minutes until cake is golden brown and a tester comes out clean.
- Cool cake before removing side of tart pan.