Mini rhubarb crumbles and steam puddings


rhubarb crumbles

I do love rhubarb. I know there is always the off chance that you get a slightly under-ripe, under-cooked and/or under-sweetened piece that makes your face pucker with it’s tartness, but to me that’s the same risk-thrill as when you get a slightly eye-watering chilli hit.

However, the other half in my life firmly believes it to be inedible, due to the texture more than the taste (I think he must have had a bad rhubarb experience) and so I must eat our supplies to myself. Poor me! As much as I would love to make Sarah Raven’s up-side-down cake, I’d never get through it alone before it went off, so I’ll save that one for when I have company.

For now, I have made individual crumbles and steam puddings that I can pop into the freezer and take out when the pudding cravings hit. You know how much us Brits love our puds, the weather only has to drop by a few degrees, heck, fractions of degrees, and it’s pudding comfort time!

Rhubarb crumble

Makes 4 individual ramekins or 1 larger crumble. Preheat the oven to a moderate temp, unless freezing/chilling for future eating (that’s why mine look a little pale, they went into the freezer uncooked).

  • 3 fat stalks of rhubarb, 4 if they’re quite thin.
  • splash of orange juice or sweet fruit cordial (such as strawberry or blackberry)
  • 200g plain flour
  • 100g cold butter, cubed
  • 100g sugar, granulated or caster, white or golden
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  1. Trim and chop the rhubarb and put into a saucepan with a little of the juice or cordial. Put on a low heat for 5 minutes while you make the crumble topping.
  2. Measure the flour and butter into a bowl and with light (preferably cold) hands, rub the butter into the flour, lifting it up as you go to keep it light and airy. Once it resembles breadcrumbs, add the sugar and ground ginger and briefly stir together.
  3. Divide the slightly stewed rhubarb between the ramekins (or place in the bottom of your dish if making a larger version) and top with the crumble mix. Be careful not to press it down or compact it. I usually use a fork to gently rake it evenly across the top, which is a very satisfying thing, like raking mini soft gravel.
  4. At this stage mine were covered in foil and placed in the freezer so that I can bake them afresh when I want one.
  5. When you’re ready to bake, just pop them in the hot oven for 20-30 mins depending on size. Don’t worry if some of the juices leak to the top, that’s what a proper crumble should do in my view.

rhubarb sponge pud

Rhubarb steam puddings

Makes 4 individual puddings. You could also make a larger version, but I’m not sure of the cooking time. Preheat oven to a moderate temp, unless freezing/chilling for future eating.

  • 1 largish stalk of rhubarb should do here (you want about 4-5 pieces in the bottom of each pudding mould)
  • splash of orange juice or sweet fruit cordial (such as strawberry or blackberry)
  • 2 tablespoons maple or golden syrup (optional)
  • 100g butter, softened (plus extra for greasing)
  • 100g sugar (I prefer to use brown sugar here)
  • a few drops of vanilla extract (optional)
  • 100g self-raising flour (or use plain and 1 tsp baking powder)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • splash of milk (may be necessary)
  1. Grease the pudding moulds with butter and then sprinkle in some of the sugar to coat the inside and add a half spoon of syrup to the bottom of each.
  2. Prepare and lightly stew the rhubarb as in step 1 of previous recipe (I made these all together).
  3. Beat the butter and sugar together, in a food mixer preferably.
  4. Add the vanilla, add a spoonful of flour and then a little egg, mix to combine, and keep going until the egg is all mixed in, then add the rest of the flour.
  5. Mix well, and if the batter seems a little stiff, add a little splash of milk.
  6. Divide the rhubarb between the moulds and then dollop the cake batter on top.
  7. Cut 4 pieces of foil and grease one side. Cover each mould tightly with the foil, greased side down (I add a little folded crease for expansion).
  8. Place them into a roasting tin and pour water in so that it comes about 2cm up the sides of the moulds.
  9. Place in the middle of the oven and bake for around 25 mins. Check them very carefully after this time, mine took a little longer (around 30-35 mins).
  10. Once the sponge has a nice bouncy spring to it on top, they’re done. Wait to cool slightly before running a knife around the edge and carefully tipping out onto a plate. As you can see, mine refused to come out cleanly for its photo shoot, typical.
  11. Serve with cream/ice-cream/custard. Enjoy.

Credits: they are both my own recipes, but I did refer to this recipe for method and cooking times of the steam puddings.

Allotment rhubarb 1-2 Allotment rhubarb 3-4

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