Rhubarb Coffee Cake

Product Stylist (Baker) Michele T. Fillion / MicheleDesigns

If you grow rhubarb in your own garden you probably have the same issue as the guy who planted too many zucchini plants. The adage is: If you grow zucchini, you know who your friends are. Those squash multiply and grow like rabbits. You're always trying to give it away. Get it now, the thing about the friends? (It means that they don't want it either.)

Rhubarb isn't quite the same, just that it grows profusely. Most folks you would try to give it to would probably not even know what to do with it. So, you can keep it as an ornamental, but the stalks are delicious cut into pieces and simply stewed and sweetened with sugar.

For another use, here is a most absolutely guaranteed to get raves recipe for rhubarb coffee cake. The cake itself is moist and crumbly, a fruity juicy burst in every bite.

Rhubarb Coffee Cake

Cream together in a bowl:

     1/2 Cup unsalted/sweet Butter
     1 1/4 Cup firm packed light or dark Brown Sugar
     2 whole Eggs
     1 tsp. Vanilla extract

Incorporate into above mixture:

     1/2 Cup Buttermilk
     2 Cups All Purpose Flour
     1 tsp. Baking Soda
     1/2 tsp. Salt


     2 1/2 Cups Rhubarb chopped in 1/2" pieces.

Pour batter into:

     9" buttered and floured square pan

Top with a mixture of:
     1/3 Cup Brown sugar
     1 tsp. Cinnamon
     1 T. melted sweet Butter
     1/2 Cup Walnuts chopped (optional)


Preheated oven at 375 F
35-40 minutes


     Warm or room temperature
     Dust with Powdered Sugar (optional)

There's more to this Cat on Rhubarb.

What's Your Rhubarb?

If you don't know the expression, look it up. OK, it means what's your gripe, squabble, quarrel. Just like in, "What's your beef?" (Jerkey!) Without getting into a whole research thing about the origin of how rhubarb is associated with squabbles, we surmise it has something to do with how it is so sour tasting. Like, So, what's curdled your cream?" Is that an expression? 

Whatever. We have no quarrel with rhubarb. It is the ruby jewel of the summer garden. We just snagged some at a roadside farm stand. At $1.99 per pound (City folk, eat your heart out.), we bought a whole big bunch. The photo above is our own set of stalks just before cutting and stewing. Dig that color. It just screams vitamin C. And, it's alliterative relative, vitamin K. So, eat more rhubarb.

Rhubarb is not all that easy to find. It is not in high demand as far as this Cat can see. It is definitely still one of the items on the ever-shorter growing list of truly seasonal items. It's a vegetable, but classed and treated like a fruit. Also, it sometimes fetches too high a high price in the supermarket. And, it's fairly quick to lose it's vigor on the shelf. We prefer fresh cut from the garden. It requires some careful cleaning and trimming. A little labor intensive. But the results are worth it.

Yet, so simple to cook. Just stew cut up rhubarb for a short time in a little clean water, sweetened with good sugar (not beet sugar, which has a taste we don't like) and there it is. Careful with the amount of sugar. You want to keep that tartness factor in play. Half a cup of sugar to about 2-3 quarts of cut rhubarb does it for us.

Spoon warm over some rich strawberry ice cream. A dessert that rules.

Here's everything you need to know about rhubarb.

And, here's an excellent recipe for Rhubarb Coffee Cake. It's Cooky Cat tested and APPROVED!

Today's Question #10

The answer is . . . "How to eat a stroopwafel"

The Dutch treat stroopwafel is a thin pizelle type waffle filled with a caramel "syrup" (stroop). Recently we visited Burt Halpern at the Touch of Dutch. For 27 years he and his bride Susan have been selling all things Dutch from their little jam packed store in Belvediere, New Jersey. Always busy, "no advertising."

When we go, it's for the licorice and the cookies. Burt clued us in to the proper method for the morning coffee and stroopwafel. You warm the cookie and its caramel filling by placing it thusly over a cup of hot coffee. Or tea. Or, a quick careful exposure in a toaster, toaster oven, heated skillet. Warm and melty, that's the Dutch way. And, it's Gouda***.

***Since 1784 when a baker from Gouda created this delight the Dutch have been enjoying them with their morning hot drink.

Here is a montage of the licorice treats we brought back from Touch of Dutch. Notice the coins (muntdrop) are embossed with Guilders, and now also Euros.