Rhubarb coconut cake

rhubarb and coconut cake

It’s rhubarb season! Which makes me really happy because I love it when you can spend a month or so eating only one thing because you know it’s going to be gone soon. Other popular seasons for me are asparagus, clementine and strawberry season. I think I’ve gone through several kilos of rhubarb in the last 2 weeks and 6 recipes. What I found was that you need to know wether you want sweet or tart. Also, success in cakes is entirely dependant on how “juicy” your rhubarb is. One cake I tried was still soggy after the recommended hour in the oven. Not so good. Last but not least, you need to know that rhubarb may look pink at first but it can change colour throughout the baking/cooking process. I’m not a fan of food colouring so I left it out. The result was pink lemonade and yellow curd all from the same batch of stalks. But the taste was out of this world (I’m a big rhubarb fan).

This rhubarb and coconut cake is a recipe I found on 10thKitchen. And it’s one of the best recipe out of the 6 I made. The cake is soft, sweet and with a hint of coconut. The rhubarb is tart and adds beautiful texture. On top is gloriously toasted desiccated coconut. This cake has some of my absolute favourite flavours.

I pretty much stuck to the recipe, only changing one or two things. So credit to 10thKitchen for this scrumptious cake which is now on my “best cakes” list.

Do you eat seasonal? What is your favourite seasonal dish?

slices of rhubarb and coconut cake

Rhubarb and coconut cake

(yields 8-10 slices)

Ingredients:

250g flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

200ml coconut milk (from a can)

3 eggs

200g sugar

12 tbsp coconut oil, warmed so it is liquid

200-220g (approx. 1 big stalk) rhubarb

6-8 tbsp desiccated coconut

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C and line a cake tin (approx. 20×10) with baking paper.
  2. Take 1 tbsp of flour and put it in a bowl, set aside.
  3. Wash the rhubarb and cut off the top and bottom bits. Now slice it lengthways and then cut the 2 lengths in cubes. Toss them in the flour making sure all the cubes are covered.
  4. Sift the remaining flour in a bowl and add the baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  5. In a second bowl, whisk the eggs and coconut milk together and set aside.
  6. Use a handmixer or a standmixer with a whisk attached and mix together the coconut oil and the sugar until the mixture is smooth (about 1 minute).
  7. Still using the mixer but now on a low speed, add half the flour and mix. Then add the milk-egg mixture and mix. Finally, add the remaining flour mixture and mix.
  8. Fold in the rhubarb with a wooden spoon or spatula and pour the mixture into the cake tin. Sprinkle the top of the cake with the desiccated coconut and then loosely cover the tin with some tin foil.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the tin foil and bake for another 35 minutes. If you think the coconut is getting too brown, put the tin foil back on.
  10. Take the cake out of the oven and let it sit for 15 minutes before removing it from the tin and letting in cool further on a wire rack.

Note: You can also make this into cupcakes. Just cut the rhubarb cubes smaller (size of a pea) and bake for about 30-35 minutes. 

This recipe was originally published on www.10thkitchen.com.

 

 

 

 

 

All about spring cleaning

spring bouquet

Spring has arrived in Berlin! The sun is shining, my winter jacket has been banished to the back of the wardrobe and socks are slowly on the way out. When the weather gets warmer and the trees start showing some green I can literally feel my energy levels going up. Even in my sleep deprived state (one or both of the kids has been waking up at night for the last couple of weeks, in other words, me too).

I suddenly got it into my head that we had too much stuff. And even more unused stuff (cakepop maker anyone?). I blame/thank Marie Kondo for making me reassess our Stuff Situation. If you really think about it, you don’t need half the stuff you have. So in an attempt to clean up, tidy up and move forward, I set to work last week. Books we have never read and were catching dust on the bookshelf? Gone! Babybed sheets and blankets? We have 2 toddlers now, so, gone! All those frames for all those photos we never get round to printing? Gone! I didn’t even get to the double buggy we still need to get rid of or the 20 plus wooden hangers we have no use for.

There is another reason for this spring clean. Personally, I need things tidy for my brain to be calm (emphasis on tidy, i.e. all the kids book either on the shelf or as a stack in the corner of the living room, or in the toy pram etc.). Mess causes chaos in my head. I don’t like chaos, it makes me unable to think. And I’m thinking a lot these days. I’m full of ideas! I have lots of dreams and plans. I want to do this and try that. Do you get that too?

3 months ago, at the start of this year, I set myself the task of drawing for 30 minutes each day. I use the Flow Calendar of Tiny Pleasures as my background, think of an idea that would work well and then draw it. I really enjoy it and my goal is to do this for every day of this year (and hopefully beyond). I want to get better at drawing and the only way that’s going to happen is if I practice. Even if it’s only 30minutes a day drawing a simple little figure with a blue hat and a stripy scarf. You can see what he gets up to on my Instagram account.

Big things have small beginnings

When I started this blog, I did it with the goal of awakening my dormant creative side. I had very little time and energy back then (2 small kids and a recent move from one country to another) so the most obvious way for me to be creative was to bake. I didn’t need anything special for it. Most of the time it was just some eggs, butter, flour, sugar, a bowl and a mixer. But now I find myself at a point where there is room for more.

Spring has always been the symbol of new beginnings. And I feel that my blog could do with some freshness and newness too. I’m not yet completely sure how that will go but the ideas are there. I am holding the seeds. I just need to plant them but for that, the conditions need to right. My conditions need to be right.

Are you doing/planning a spring clean in your life? What is it you want to tidy up or get rid of?

Berlin Tierpark in the spring

 

 

Lemon and raspberry meringue pie

lemon raspberry meringue pie with chocolate decoration

Let’s talk about inspiration for a minute. Where do you get yours? Are you a Pinterest addict with one too many pins on white-grey living room deco? Or do you search books and magazines for quotes that will help you achieve a goal when you need a little bit of extra oomph? You can find inspiration anywhere. You don’t even have to look that hard. Just look around you. If you already knew this it’s worth taking the time to really emphasise it. If not by yourself, by some complete stranger (which is what happened to me…).

lemons raspberries yellow flowers

Last weekend I attended the Hive, a gathering of digital storytellers, tastemakers and bloggers. I am still new to blogging so I have lots of moments where I think to myself: Am I good enough? Am I different enough to stand out? Am I sharing something worthwhile? And here’s the answer: yes, yes, YES! I listened to some very inspirational people. I absolutely loved the fabulous woman behind My Scandinavian Home who reminded us that we are all unique and we need to “be your own kind of beautiful”. I was also very much taken by Chelsea who is the beautiful brains behind Frolic!. She emphasised the importance of being happy in what you do and to know that you will never be able to please everyone. I also had the privilege to watch and listen to Dietlind Wolf who is the most amazing woman. Her styling and photographs are something so beautiful I can’t pull myself away from her blog.

yellow flowers white vase

Where is this leading?

While you, my dearest reader, have been reading this blogpost in search of a lemon and raspberry meringue pie, I’ve had the opportunity to be that complete stranger who has just reminded you of how brilliant, unique and full of inspiration you are.

close up raspberries lemon curd

And now go and make this fabulous pie!

 

Lemon and raspberry meringue pie

Inspired by the Hive’s yellow and pink colour theme

(Serves 8)

For the meringue:

3 egg whites

170g sugar

1 tbsp vanilla sugar

For the lemon curd:

3 egg yolks

60ml fresh lemon juice, strained to remove any pits or pulp (about 2 small lemons)

6 tbsp sugar

4 tbsp cold butter in cubes

For the finishing touches:

250g fresh raspberries

Method:

Start by making the meringue. It takes a while so if you prefer a dry meringue you’ll need to start a good while before you plan to eat the pie. You can make the meringue the night before and let it cool in the oven overnight. Or make it in the morning and leave it to cool in the oven during the day if you plan to eat it in the evening. If you prefer a wet meringue you’ll only need to plan for 2-3 hours total time from start to finish (most of that is the meringue baking so you won’t be in the kitchen for 2-3 hours straight).

1. Preheat your oven to 100 degrees C. Line a baking tray with baking paper and mark a circle the size of a plate.

2.In a stand mixer with the whisk attachment (or hand mixer) whip the egg whites until very soft peaks form. Then add the sugar a tablespoon at the time. Make sure you leave some time in between spoonfuls so the sugar has time to “dissolve”. The meringue is done when you can’t feel anymore sugar grains when you rub some of the mixture between your fingers. And when it is stiff and glossy.

3. Using a piping bag, spoon or spatula, shape the meringue into a thin circle as marked on your baking paper (about 2-3cm/1 inch thick). Smooth out the top. You want it to look like a disk.

4. Bake in the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes to 1 hour 45 minutes. Then take out the meringue and let it cool on a wire rack. When cool, carefully peel off the baking paper. Or turn off the oven and leave to cool inside as mentioned above.

Make the lemon curd while the meringue is baking. You can let it cool and store for later. 

1. In a saucepan on medium-low heat, mix the egg yolks, sugar and lemon juice. Keep whisking as it heats up and simmers.

2. Whisk as the curd simmers and thickens. Depending on your hob, this will take between 10-15minutes.

3. Take the pan off the heat and stir in the butter until melted.

4. Pour the curd in a clean jar and let it cool. It will thicken even more as it gets colder. Close the jar and put it in the fridge until you need it. But remember to take it out leaving enough time to let it adjust to room temperature.

Putting it all together:

Put the meringue on a flat plate or cake stand. Spoon on the lemon curd and spread it out. Don’t go all the way to the edge. Then place the raspberries on top.

lemon raspberry meringue pie with chocolate decoration top view

This is not just any lemon and raspberry meringue pie, it’s my Hive lemon and raspberry meringue pie. Let me know what you think. Does it look good? Did it meet your sweetness needs?

Meringue lemon curd raspberry pie

ENJOY!

chocolate Hive 15 decoration

Chocolate Hive15

yellow flower

Yellow

lemon raspberry meringue pie photo shoot set

In the end, this is real life.