a rhubarb schlump: strawberry-rhubarb pudding cake

When I was little, my parents had a little garden patch in the backyard where we grew all kinds of things: raspberries, corn, carrots, chives, lettuce and always, always rhubarb. Strangely enough being the sour-lover that I am, I wasn’t a fan. It just looked too much like celery and I just didn’t understand the attraction that made my parents and brother head out to the garden patch with a bowl of white sugar where they would dip and chomp their sugar-coated stalks like nobody’s business. Besides eating it raw, my mom would eventually make a rhubarb compote or a crumble….it was like my family was trying to poison me! To me, this wasn’t dessert, it was h-e-double hockey sticks. But then I grew up and fell in love with that strange fruit. Rhubarb, what’s not to love! I’ve eaten it raw, turned it into crumble…hell, I’ve even made compote. But one thing I’ve never had was the strawberry-rhubarb combo. Cornelius assured me it was a perfect pairing and after trying my hand at this decidedly schlumpy, but totally knock-your-socks-off cake, I can agree. Strawberry and rhubarb rocks.

This cake tastes great on it’s own, but you can dress it up with whipped cream or ice cream and turn it into a real treat. Or eat it up for breakfast with a dollop of yogurt, like we did in the photo above.

12 comments to “a rhubarb schlump: strawberry-rhubarb pudding cake”

  1. 1
    E.A. Aleksandroff, alias GT   June 12, 2007 at 12:44 pm

    Well, the leaves are in fact mildly poisonous. I’ve never cooked with rhubarb, but I’ve had it in a berry cake from Whole Foods, and I have some good Bon Appetit recipes for chutney with it. Try it with peanut butter if it’s shaped like celery…

  2. 2
    Joanne   June 12, 2007 at 1:42 pm

    I must be a Canadian oddity because I have never ever bought rhubarb, nor cooked or baked with it…my parents never ever had rhubarb in their fridge or growing in their garden. Rhubarb is very foreign to me.
    Oh, I have tried it maybe once in a pie or something and I’m sure it was okay. I’ve also seen it at the market and have come across numerous recipes for desserts with rhubarb but I just haven’t warmed up to the idea of experimenting with rhubarb.

    I’m sure my husband would enjoy this dessert. So one day if I feeling particularly nice – I might make it for him 😀

  3. 3
    cara   June 12, 2007 at 3:04 pm

    my mom makes a mean strawberry and rhubarb pie… it’s my favorite pie that she makes. this sounds equally as yummy though!

  4. 4
    Jerry   June 13, 2007 at 6:13 am

    I tried making rhubarb into a compote for chicken in the spring, however I did not like it. Maybe it was not good rhubarb. I will once again have to try it.

  5. 5
    kickpleat   June 13, 2007 at 5:38 pm

    it’s true about the leaves, gtangerine…but eating them with strawberries is just about like heaven. tasty!!

    joanne, you should try it again…but try it mixed with berries. there is something a bit bitter about plain rhubarb, but mixed with strawberries it tastes like candy. i definitely think both you & your hubs would love this cake!

    cara, rhubarb & strawberry pie sounds lovely!

    jerry, mix the rhubarb with strawberries for another try, i’m sure you’ll like it better than plain.

  6. 6
    Kim   June 13, 2007 at 5:53 pm

    I just made this for my husband for a belated birthday treat, and got rave reviews. Thank you so much for putting the idea and recipe in my head.

  7. 7
    Tartelette   June 14, 2007 at 12:49 pm

    At first I read “rhubarb slurp” which what I would usually say about rhubarb when I was a kid, all this to say I love everything that includes it.
    Great dessert!

  8. 8
    Eric   June 28, 2007 at 6:45 pm

    My mother had a garden with rhubarb when I was a kid and she made straight up rhubarb meringue pie. To die for I’m tellin’ ya. Everyone seems to want to sweeten up rhubarb with strawberry, but that (IMHO) kills the tartness and the flavor. I’m 28 and every birthday I’ve had for as long as I can remember she’s made me a rhubarb pie for my birthday.

  9. 9
    Anonymous   June 29, 2007 at 5:54 am

    Do you think that the recipe would work well if the strawberries were left out and the amount of rhubarb increased? I looooove rhubarb and would prefer to have the flavor alone (although it is pretty dang good with any berries, too).

  10. 10
    kickpleat   June 29, 2007 at 8:58 am

    kim, glad this recipe was so successful! i’m sure your husband was super happy to get belated cake 🙂

    haha, rhubarb slurp! i love it helen!

    eric, rhubarb meringue pie sounds awesome! you are a lucky boy 🙂

    anon, yes, you can definitely leave out the strawberries here. it just won’t have that lovely pink colour, but it will still taste good…althought depending on your tart-meter, you may want to increase the sugar a little bit.

  11. 11
    Emma B   June 10, 2011 at 2:31 am

    Had totally forgotten about dipping rhubarb into sugar – I did that too as a kid – also a sour lover, love this recipe

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