Observations about the universe, life, Lausanne and me

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Substitution cake

I've made (and posted about) rhubarb cake before. Today, after a very frustrating day in the lab (LabView, oh how I hate you, you and your evil minion the GPIB bus) that thankfully ended on the high note of everything suddenly working - my lab-mates say it was simply the result of a day of hard work, but I maintain that the equipment was cowed at last by myself swinging a small bottle of hydrogen menacingly - I grabbed half a kilo of rhubarb on the way home.

The ingredients-list for the cake is simple:

  • Dough:

    Four egg-yolks, 150 g sugar, a packet of vanilla sugar, a shot of rum, 150 g butter, 250 g flour.

  • Topping:

    Four egg-whites, 100 g sugar, 500 g rhubarb, eventually some grated hazel.
 Only at home I noticed that I did not have any butter anymore, I had only three eggs left, and my sugar-reserves were down to a pitiful fifty grams. I could not find the enrgy to return to the shop (it is nearly a hundred and fifty meters, after all!), but I would not be thwarted. Three eggs will do for four, honey is a good substitute for sugar. I had no hazel, but found a packet of sesame seeds. Instead of butter I planned on using vegetable oil - only to notice that I had run out as well! But, there was still some mid-quality olive oil left...

To summarise, I used

  • honey instead of sugar
  • olive oil insted of vegetable oil  instead of butter
  • sesame seeds instead of hazel.

The result?

Really, really tasty. The sesame on top goes very well with the honey, the rhubarb supplies the acidic touch, and the olive oil adds an interesting touch. No, really. It was a pity I had not more eggs, since the egg-whites were a bit overwhelmed by the rhubarb (I just could not bear to cut down on it), so it is not as aestethically pleasing as usual. Also, I suspect the honey inhibited the rising of the egg-white a bit. But still, it's the taste that matters!

Don't ever be afraid of trying something out when cooking - most of the time it will work, more and more so when you get more experienced. Although sometimes... remind me to tell you of the horror that was my banana-liver sauté in crème fraîche!

As a bonus for my german-speaking readers (although others may find it auricularily pleasing) here is a small video about rhubarb cake. Also, why german is awesome.

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