Rhubarb & raspberry crunch cake

Is it a cake? Or is it a pudding? Whatever you call it, this is delicious! The base is full of buttery almond flavour, and the crunchy fruit topping is rather addictive. Serve warm with vanilla ice-cream. If there are any leftovers, warm them up before serving.

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

100 g unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
65 g (1/3 cup) caster sugar
2 large free range eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
Pinch of salt
Finely grated rind of 1 lemon
125 g (1 ¼ cups) almond meal
1 ½ tsps baking powder 

200 g (about 2 large stalks) rhubarb, well washed
100 g raspberries, fresh or frozen
50 g (¼ cup) demerara sugar
35 g (1/3 cup) almonds, roughly chopped

Directions:

  1. Heat your oven to 180° C fan-forced. Grease and line a 20 cm square cake pan with nonstick baking paper, allowing the paper to extend up two of the sides.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, caster sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt and lemon rind. In a separate medium bowl, combine the almond meal and baking powder, stirring to distribute the baking powder evenly.

  3. Add the butter and egg mixture to the almond meal mixture, stirring until just combined.

  4. Spoon the batter into the cake tin and smooth out so it is even.

  5. Mix rhubarb, raspberries, demerara sugar and almonds together in a bowl. Scatter the mixture evenly over the top of the cake and press it slightly into the mixture. It will look like a lot of topping, but it will just fit.

  6. Bake at 180° C for 20 minutes and then turn the oven down to 160° C and bake for a further 10 minutes. Check the centre of the cake with a skewer. If it's still gooey, bake for up to another 10 minutes.

Tips:

This is the ideal pudding–cake (or 'pake' as my mum would call it) to pull together when you have last-minute guests or you're just in the mood to bake on a dreary winter Sunday afternoon.

Your kitchen will smell heavenly while the pake is baking, and eating it is like curling up with the best childhood memories. 

Recipe developed by award-winning cook and food writer Andrea Ball