SPICED AP­PLE CAKE WITH TEA-POACHED RHUBARB

Country Style - - COUNTRY CHEF -

Serves 6 4 eggs 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar 300g but­ter, melted, cooled 2½ cups plain flour 3 tea­spoons bak­ing pow­der 1 ta­ble­spoon ground nut­meg 1 ta­ble­spoon ground cin­na­mon 1 small ap­ple, peeled, cored, diced 1 for­est fruits-flavoured herbal tea bag 1 cup boil­ing wa­ter 6 rhubarb stalks, trimmed ⅓ cup caster sugar ¾ cup thick­ened cream, whipped vi­o­las and pineap­ple marigolds, to gar­nish* Pre­heat oven to 180°C. Grease a 20cm x 30cm lam­ing­ton pan and line with bak­ing pa­per. Us­ing an elec­tric mixer, beat eggs un­til light and fluffy. Add brown sugar and melted but­ter, and beat for 3 min­utes or un­til thick and creamy. Sift flour, bak­ing pow­der, nut­meg and cin­na­mon into a bowl. Add flour mix­ture and ap­ple to egg mix­ture, and stir un­til well com­bined. Pour into pre­pared pan and smooth sur­face. Bake for 30 min­utes or un­til a skewer in­serted into centre comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 min­utes. Mean­while, place tea bag in a small heat­proof jug and pour over boil­ing wa­ter. Set aside for 5 min­utes to in­fuse. Cut each rhubarb stalk into 4 even pieces. Place caster sugar, ¼ cup herbal tea and 1½ cups wa­ter in a large deep fry­ing pan over a medium heat. Stir un­til sugar dis­solves and mix­ture boils. Re­duce heat to low. Sim­mer for 5 min­utes or un­til re­duced slightly. Add rhubarb and cook for 5 min­utes or un­til just ten­der. Re­move from heat and cool in poach­ing liq­uid. Turn warm cake onto a chop­ping board and cut into squares. Ar­range cake and rhubarb in bowls. Driz­zle with poach­ing liq­uid and top with cream. Gar­nish with vi­o­las and marigolds. En­sure flow­ers have not been treated with sprays. Pineap­ple marigolds (Tagetes tenuifo­lia ‘Le­mon Gem’ ), also avail­able at gar­den cen­tres.

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