I was expecting it to be a cold and miserable weekend so I cooked a big roast pork leg on Saturday night followed by a good wintry pudding to use up some of the rhubarb, the only thing flourishing in the veggie garden at the moment:
Rhubarb Pudding Serves 8
6 stalks of rhubarb
3 pears, peeled, cored and sliced into wedges
1 tblsp brown sugar
zest of one orange
200g castor sugar
185g butter, diced
1 teasp vanilla essence
150g self-raising flour, sifted
2 tablespoons almond meal
75ml buttermilk (normal milk is ok)
Roughly chop rhubarb and place in a saucepan with brown sugar and 150ml water. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, then add the pears and cook for a further 4 minutes. You don't want the rhubarb to collapse completely. Taste and add more sugar if necessary (it will depend on the rhubarb, I added a tablespoon of my mother-in-law's loganberry jam, you could use strawberry or raspberry, entirely up to you). Add the orange zest and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 180. Cream the butter and castor sugar until pale and beat in the eggs one at a time with the vanilla until smooth. Gently fold in flour, almond meal and milk.
Strain the fruit and reserve the excess syrup in a jug. Put the fruit into a baking dish and spoon the batter gently over the top. Bake for 40 minutes until golden and cooked through (check with a skewer).
Serve with ice cream or cream and pour over the reserved syrup.
I made the Orange and Cardomom Ice Cream from Stephanie Alexander's Cook's Companion which went with it beautifully.
May I confess that the leftovers were my dinner last night...