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Best Rhubarb or Cranberry Recipe ever: Swiss Rhubarb Meringue Cake
Makes one spring form 9 inches / 24 cm diameter or 12 cupcakes
Warning: This decadent rhubarb cake is highly addictive. Even people who don’t usually like rhubarb will enjoy the exotic mix of sweet and sour with the sinfully gooey and slightly crisp topping. Made with Cranberries it makes the perfect dessert for Christmas or Thanksgiving. You will be the star of any Potluck and people will be fighting over the crumbs. Therefore, better bring a double batch of cupcakes instead of the cake.
This versatile recipe works equally well with fresh or frozen fruit or berries. Important: If you use frozen ingredients make sure that they are almost defrosted and well drained in order to get rid of excess liquid. This may require some light squeezing of the defrosted rhubarb. If the filling is too wet, the base may turn out doughy and undercooked.
Tip: If you are a lazy cook or in a rush, you may use approx. 1/2 packet of store bought cake mix (eg. angel food, yellow cake etc.) for the base, but don't tell anyone....
Beware: This cake is baked in 2 stages and requires an extra step after 15-25 minutes of baking, so make sure that you have enough time on your hand!
- Base approx. 10 – 15 minutes (1st step)
- Meringue: 5 minutes (2nd step)
Baking time for cake:
- 25 minutes: 360° F / 180° C (1st stage)
- 20 minutes: 360° F / 180° C (2nd stage)
Baking time for cupcakes:
- 15 minutes: 360° F / 180° C (1st stage)
- 15 minutes: 360° F / 180° C (2nd stage)
To make 12 cupcakes follow the same steps as for the cake but instead of using a spring form divide dough and fruit evenly into a muffin tray. Reduce the total baking time to 30 minutes (2x 15 minutes)
1 ¼ sticks (approx. 150 ml) butter softened
2/3 cup (approx. 160 ml) sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla essence
2 eggs whole
2 egg yolks (reserve the 2 egg whites for the meringue, below)
1 cup all purpose flour
½ cup corn starch
2 tsp. Baking powder
2 egg whites
½ cup sugar
1 pinch cream of tartar (can be substituted with baking powder)
Grease a 9 inch / 24 diameter spring form. (If your spring form is slightly smaller, bake base 5 minutes longer, if it’s slightly larger, bake 5 minutes less). Alternatively you can use a muffin tray that makes 12 muffins.
1st Step (base):
Cream together butter, sugar, vanilla, eggs and egg yolks until light and creamy.
Add flour, cornstarch and baking powder and mix until well combined.
Pour batter into spring form and spread evenly.
Chop Rhubarb into chunks (approx. 1 cm) and remove any stringy parts. Sprinkle Rhubarb chunks evenly over batter.
Bake for 25 minutes at 360° F / 180° C in lower half of oven.
If you make muffins reduce the baking time to 15 minutes only.
2nd step (Meringue topping):
Start making the meringue topping 5 minutes before you remove the half-cooked rhubarb base from oven allowing you to finish the cake immediately and putting it back into the oven for the final baking.
Whisk egg whites until almost stiff. Add sugar and cream of tartar and carry on whipping until you have a very stiff and fluffy meringue.
After 25 minutes remove half-baked cake from oven and spread meringue evenly on top.
Return to oven and bake for another 20 minutes at 360° F / 180° C until slightly browned.
If you make muffins reduce the baking time to 15 minutes.
Let cool completely before cutting!
If you are a rhubarb lover you may also want to try out my rhubarb chocolate chip cake recipe: