The first of spring’s crop!

Lesson on a spring vegetable + Rhubarb Coffee Cake

What is rhubarb? Technically it’s a vegetable, though it’s usually used as a fruit. The stalk is the only edible part of the plant, with the leaves being quite toxic. Rhubarb is really sour when raw, you’ll need to cook it in something sweet, with sugar  or with other sweeter fruits.

It’s one of the first plants to pop up in the spring. April to June is the peak season across Canada.

These were fresh picked last season. I chopped them into 1″ cubes and then popped them in the freezer for this year’s pies and cakes. In the grocery, look for firm unblemished stalks that show no signs of being dried out. Don’t use colour as an indicator of freshness, as rhubarb can range in colour from pale green to deep red.

I usually blend rhubarb with the sweetness of strawberries and tons of sugar for a delicious pie. This year, since I am featuring cakes each month, I decided to try a less sweet option. This is a simple coffeecake with the added tartness of rhubarb, not sweet at all. Great with coffee and a big scoop of ice cream. vivaxa cream

Since I usually like everything really sweet, I added a big scoop of banana chocolate chip ice cream – much better!


Spring Rhubarb Coffeecake
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Total time: 1 hour 5 mins
Serves: 8-10
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup yogurt (plain or vanilla if you like it sweeter!)
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups rhubarb, chopped into 1 “ pieces
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter and flour an 8” round spring-form pan.
  2. In a large bowl whisk flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. In another bowl beat egg, yogurt, melted butter and vanilla until fluffy. Stir into flour mixture until blended. Batter will be stiff. Stir in rhubarb. Spread into prepared pan and smooth top.
  4. Combine brown sugar, flour and cinnamon. With your fingers work together until crumbly. Sprinkle over cake batter.
  5. Bake 45-50 minutes.
  6. Cool. Serve with ice cream.






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One Response to "The first of spring’s crop!"

  1. Misty says:

    Wow! Those are gorgeous shots of the rhubarb! I need to include this in my spring baking for my 52 Cake challenge before I leave Canada! Thanks for the recipe!


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