Rhubarb Schnapps | Rhubarb Cake
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Every spring this happens: I blink, and rhubarb season passes. And in one second, my to-make list of rhubarb recipes dissolves, my thoughts shifting to stone fruits and no-cook dinners and popsicles. Before we know it, it will be the Fourth of July, and I, my mother’s daughter, will be declaring summer over. Ugh, depressing.
I think I might, however, have a solution to these time-passing-too-quickly woes: rhubarb schnapps, a mixture of chopped rhubarb, sugar and vodka, the cheapest you can find, Nigella insists. Sounds like a win, right?
Let’s hope. Unfortunately, this is another one of those recipes whose success I cannot guarantee. In six weeks, I will report back, but as with the lemons, won’t it be more fun come mid-July to open our Mason jars together?
Perhaps I’m taking a chance. But at this present moment, I can’t imagine a better union of three ingredients to bet on. And at this present moment, could there be a kitchen task more worth its risk, the upshot being rhubarb liqueur, the most-adored flavor of spring captured in high-octane, liquid form? In just one day, the vodka has leached most of the pink from the rhubarb, giving the schnapps-in-progress a beautiful, rosy hue. I am so looking forward to tapping into this jar in just a few short weeks.
Friends, I urge you: don’t blink. Scrounge for those rhubarb stalks languishing in your nearest market; forage in your neighbor’s backyard. We’ll toast your efforts in six weeks. Nothing will taste sweeter. Cheers, and best of luck.
Another one of my favorites from How to Be a Domestic Goddess: rhubarb cornmeal cake:
- Total Time: 5 minutes
Source: How To Be A Domestic Goddess
- 1 1/4 lbs. (about) rhubarb, cleaned and trimmed
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 liter vodka, cheap is just fine
- Chop the rhubarb and divide it between two 1-liter jars or one 2-liter jars. Add 3/4 cup sugar to each jar or all of the sugar to the 2-liter jar, put the lids on and shake well. Unscrew the lids and pour 2 1/4 cups of vodka into each to fill or all of the vodka into the larger jar.
- Close the lids, put the jars somewhere cool and dark for at least 6 weeks and up to 6 months. If you remember, shake the jars every day or every other day for the first month or so.
- Strain into a pitcher, then pour into a bottle.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
Rhubarb Cornmeal Cake
- Total Time: 1 hours 15 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings
Adapted from How To Be A Domestic Goddess
Note: Original recipe included cinnamon, which I omit. I have increased the salt and vanilla, too, but otherwise I follow the recipe. I love this cake — the cornmeal adds a creaminess as well as a lovely crunchy texture, and it’s a snap to throw together.
- 1 pound 2 ounces (510 g) rhubarb
- 1 cup (232 g) sugar
- 1 cup (128 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp (90g) fine cornmeal
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (4 oz | 113 g) unsalted butter (soft)
- 1 cup plus 2 Tbsp plain, whole milk yogurt
- 9-inch springform pan, buttered and lined with parchment or wax paper
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Wash and dry the rhubarb if necessary, and then trim, removing and stringy bits, and cut into 1/2 inch slices. Put into bowl and cover with 1/3 cup of the sugar, while you get on with the rest of the cake. Don’t let the rhubarb stand for more than half an hour or the sugar will make too much liquid seep out.
- Mix the flour, baking soda, salt, and cornmeal together. With a fork, beat the eggs with the vanilla in a measuring cup or small bowl. In a large bowl (I used my stand mixer), cream the butter and the rest of the sugar, then gradually add the egg and vanilla mixture, beating while you do so. Then add the flour-cornmeal mixture alternately with the yogurt. They just need to be combined: don’t overmix.
- Finally, add the rhubarb together with its sugary, pink juices, folding in to mix, and then pour the speckled batter into the prepared pan. Put in the preheated oven and bake for about 55 minutes to 1 hour or until springy to the touch. You may need to cover it with foil after about 40 minutes so that the top doesn’t scorch. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for a while before unmolding.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 55 minutes
This one might have preferred angel food cake.
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30 Comments on “Rhubarb Schnapps | Rhubarb Cake”
Yes please! My farmers market still has a ton of rhubarb. Totally doing this.
OMG, that baby!! I could eat her up. The cake too 🙂
Great recipes, will have to find me some rhubarb. I agree the summers go by too fast. Adorable baby!
Thank you Cheri!
This looks great. Curious about the method — wondering how much flavor will be rendered having not heated the vodka. I might try bringing the vodka to a simmer first to increase the infusing. Great idea!
I was actually thinking the same thing. When I made vanilla extract a few years ago, I was advised to bring the alcohol up to just a simmer, which would help the beans infuse better. I might just have to make another batch to compare…hmmm. There are worse tasks to undertake twice, right? Thanks for the idea!
Did you end up trying both methods? Just picked up a haul of rhubarb at the farmers market!!
Alas, Kaitlin, I did not … so lazy! But, I say go for it — it works as described above and could only be improved by taking the extra step to heat the vodka.
Simply gorgeous as always! Love this idea. Cheers!
Oooh another experiment we get to wait and see what happens with! I love it. I have never made a liqueur before! We have tried infusing liquors with flavors from fruits or vegetables with good results — however, in those cases I would warn “do NOT eat the fruit after its strained out!” It tastes absolutely bitter and super alcoholic. We learned the hard way with cucumber gin 🙂 Ha! However, you’ve got all this sugar on your side with the schnapps… hmmmmmmm!
That cake! The cornmeal! The little flags! You are so good at life
omg, sophie, i had that same experience with cucumber gin! I totally thought the cucs were going to be so good, but they were not. What did you do with your cucumber gin? I remember having grand plans, and then I think I just made g&ts with mint and lime.
And you are too sweet. Thank you. I always love hearing from you 🙂
Haha yes, I think as fancy as our cucumber gin got was being mixed with seltzer and ice. Mint and lime sound like wonderful additions! We need to get our homemade cocktails on again soon 🙂
I adore rhubarb – both of these are most definitely on my list to make now. They look wonderful!
Thank you, Ashley! I hope you like them. The cake is a fave; the schnapps a with-any-luck fave…I’ll keep you posted 🙂
I have three of Nigella’s books and I love most of her recipes, but you’ve inspired me with this rhubarb cake.
I’m going to make it and follow your tips, thanks!
Yes! I think this is such a good one — love the flavor of the cornmeal, and I just adore the flavor of rhubarb.
Happy birthday Ms. Wrenipoo! Hope your day was as lovely and bright as you wished for! Tell your mom Hi! From me and Bearish!
Wrenipoo says hi, Laurie! She wishes you were here to help her mother with her garden, which is not looking so hot. Thank you for the birthday wishes! Big hugs!! xo
Wish I was there too! Although even superwoman (you!) has to have limits….. Between children and husband and blogging and cooking and putting up moonshine and rhubarb I’m surprised you have time to sleep, let alone garden! You don’t, do you ? Sleep?! How could you possibly have time….what are you growing?!
Haha, Laurie, I love you. I do sleep! I sleep too much, and then I neglect the blog, but I just love my sleep…until I wake up in the middle of the night with a panick attack thinking about all I have to do. Alas, these are all good problems to have I suppose. OK, we are growing 2 tomato plants, 3 kale, and 6 Swiss chard. I might try to get some herbs going too.
Wow, I can’t wait to make this for my husband! It looks simple and amazing! Love that you used greener rhubarb.
Darling Baby!!! The highlight of the post. I can’t wait to see what happens with the schnapps. In the meantime the cake looks great—-rhubarb and corn meal—yay!
Thanks so much, Carol!
Another good one to try is black raspberry vodka. We have 21 acres in Schenectady county and it is overrun with wild black raspberry vines. I picked about 6 cups of them, covered them with a liter of vodka in a jar and placed in a cool dark place, shaking the jar every day or so. After two weeks, strain and serve as a vodka tonic with lime. Have made it with blackberries as well, but it doesn’t compare to the wild black raspberries.
Karen, this sounds so good! So refreshing. I’ve been serving the rhubarb schnapps (we’re on our third batch) with lime and a splash of tonic, and it is delicious. How lucky that you have 21 acres! Our neighbors have a ton of raspberry bushes in their yard, and I was eyeing them earlier this summer, thinking how nice they would be in some sort of liqueur. I might have to go foraging for berries…black raspberry schnapps sounds SO good!
Finally I tested the first batch of schnapps–although I think it really is a liqueur, perhaps because I used a 725 ml bottle (I found a reasonably priced organic vodka that came with a cork top–I used the bottle to store the finished liqueur). What a feeling of triumph. I’ve made two batches, the second not quite ready. The first batch is quite pale like a delicate rose wine. The second is deeper hued. Both are lovely to look at. I serve the rhubarb liqueur chilled although my husband likes it at room temperature. But the feeling of accomplishment for something so simple to make is remarkable. The transformation of simple ingredients into something sublime is fun, and served in a delicate glass all the more satisfying. I’m going to try a pear version this fall.
Wonderful to hear this! I hope the pear version turns out well. Please report back if it does!
I have a board on Pinterest dedicated to just rhubarb.! I am so anxious to try these 2 recipes! I think my best Rhubarb recipe was Rhubarb Wine. Please don’t ask for the recipe. It was a TOTAL mistake. Too much sugar, but it would knock your socks off! I could never recreate it, but had a friend who asked for it frequently!
That’s so fun! I love rhubarb schnapps so much — so tasty and so pretty. I have an updated recipe here: Rhubarb Schnapps, Updated