Saturday, April 28, 2012

rhubarb strawberry coffee cake

Isn’t having your breakfast outdoors one of life's simple pleasures? I awoke to a sunny morning and couldn’t stop myself from quickly whipping up a decadent breakfast coffee cake, so that I could enjoy eating it outside on my balcony. What a wonderful start to my day, with warm rhubarb strawberry coffee cake, freshly brewed coffee, an ocean view and sunshine on my face.

This rhubarb strawberry coffee cake is so simple to make, the hardest part was trying to be very quite and not wake my family. However, it wasn’t the noise that woke them; it was the sweet aroma of cake and cinnamon.

Serve this cake warm or at room temperature. It is very moist and the cinnamon topping cooks throughout the cake, adding just enough spice. The rhubarb adds a slight tartness and the strawberries balance it off with sweet deliciousness. This breakfast cake is perfect with coffee and fresh fruit.   By the way, the island in the ocean view background is Catalina.

My family asked "what is rhubarb?"  I told them "it looks like red celery and is tart".  What I didn't tell them is that it's a vegetable and is used in desserts such as pies.  If you have never tried rhubarb, do not be afraid to do so.  Once my family tasted this coffee cake, they quickly got over the idea that it resembled celery.

This is a simple and quick coffee cake to make.  A brown sugar and cinnamon topping is added before baking.  The topping bakes into the cake.

Fresh out of the oven and already a piece is missing.

I sure hope that I wake up to a sunny morning tomorrow…I’m ready for some more rhubarb strawberry coffee cake.

rhubarb strawberry coffee cake
Adapted from At Blanchard’s Table: A trip to the beach

For the topping:
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup light brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled
1-teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a small bowl, blend the sugars, cinnamon, and butter, using a pastry blender or your fingers, mix until crumbly. Set aside.

For the cake:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1-teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 ½ cups sugar
½ cup (1stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 large egg
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups rhubarb, cut into 1/4-inch pieces (you can use frozen or fresh.  If using frozen, be sure to thaw and dry prior to using)
1-cup strawberries, quartered

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Generously butter a 9 x 13-inch cake pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.

Pour the milk into a measuring cup and add vinegar, stir and set aside.

Using a mixer, cream the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add the egg and blend well.

On low speed, add the flour mixture and beat only until just blended. Add the milk and vinegar mixture, and vanilla. Mix just enough to blend – do not over beat.

Using a rubber spatula, fold in the rhubarb and strawberries by hand.

Spread the batter in the prepared pan and sprinkle with the topping. Bake until golden brown or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes.

Serve warm or at room temperature. 


  1. How did you know my crop of rhubarb is up in the garden and looking to be used? Love the ease and love the smiles this will bring to my family. Perfect for breakfast. It just beckons.

    1. Oh wow, how nice to be able to use your own garden fresh rhubarb. I hope your family enjoys the coffee cake as much as mine did.

  2. Pretty photographs! Love the colors

  3. I love a good coffee cake and this sounds divine! Bookmarked this recipe to try asap :)

  4. Strawberry-rhubarb is my absolute favorite springtime combo! This looks super yummy!

  5. This looks like the perfect weekend coffee cake. I'm very jealous of your outdoor breakfast, I live in an apartment with no outdoor space!

  6. This cake sounds delicious! I can't wait until my rhubarb is ready to harvest! I would love a ginormous piece of this cake!

  7. Rhubarb is one of my favorites and I have been eagerly waiting for it to come into season here. I just wish the season were a bit longer, if you blink it's gone. This coffee cake looks like the perfect way to use it too! It's nice to have something other than pie or preserves!

  8. I love strawberry and rhubarb. This coffee cake looks beautiful :-)

  9. I love rhubarb and this cake looks divine! Nice photos too!

  10. Eating outdoors (not only breakfast) is one of my greatest pleasures! And this coffee cake looks delicious!

    Greek Food Shop

  11. Such a pretty cake! I would love to have this as the start to my morning!



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