Recipe: Rhubarb Tarte Tartin with a crumble base

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When I know spring is around the corner, I start looking for one of my favorite products of this season: rhubarb! I just love the pink and green stalks with their sweet and tangy flavor.  Every year I like to make a new recipe with it, which is so easy, because rhubarb is a super versatile vegetable. You can use it in desserts, breakfasts, sauces, jams and of course in cakes! This year I decided to make a cake from the rhubarb, but not an ordinary one. I felt the need to use a new technique, so I decided to make a tarte tartin. This was something I had never made before and I figured it would give the rhubarb an extra dimension through the caramellising process that happens in the pan. Because a rhubarb crumble is such a classic, I wanted a to incorporate a crumble layer as well. But it is not on the rhubarb, but in the base of the cake. Sounds delicious right?

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The rhubarb does need a little treatment before you can use it in this tarte tartin. It needs to be washed, peeled and cut. Because rhubarb contains a lot of water, I coated it with a lot sugar, which absorbs the moisture. You will have to coat it, leave it for 5 minutes and then give it a toss. Then leave it for another 5 minutes.

Because it is a tarte tartin, you build it up upsidedown. So you start with the rhubarb in the bottom of the springform, then the cake layer and the crumble layer is on top while baking. You turn the cake upsidedown after baking it.

What do you need for this delicious tarte tartin?
For the crumble:
◾60 grams of unsalted butter, melted
◾120 grams of all-purpose flour
◾60 grams of sugar
◾Salt
◾150 grams of unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for buttering pan
For the cake:
◾400 grams of rhubarb, cleaned (washed and peeled) and sliced in 2 cm pieces
◾360 grams of sugar
◾360 grams of all-purpose flour
◾1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
◾Salt
◾ 2 large eggs
◾240 ml sour cream
◾1 teaspoon vanilla extract
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How to make it:

1. Preheat oven to 175 degrees Celcius. 2. Make the topping: stir the melted butter, flour, sugar, and a pinch of salt until it is moist and crumbly. I found it easiest to do this by hand, because you can feel the consitency better.
3. Make the cake: Butter a 24 centimeter springform pan.
4. Dot with 50 grams of butter (cut it into little pieces).
5. Coat the rhubarb with 180 grams of sugar; let stand for 5 minutes. Toss it and leave it for 5 minutes ) again, and spread in pan.
6. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt in a separate.
7.Beat the remaining butter and 240 grams of sugar with a mixer on medium speed until it looks pale and fluffy.
8. Beat in the eggs, 1 at a time, until incorporated. Also add the vanilla extract at this point.
9. Beat in flour mixture in 3 phases, alternating with sour cream, until you get a smooth dough.
10. Spread the dough evenly over rhubarb. Then give it a shake to make sure there is no air captured underneath.
11. Spread the crumble topping evenly over the cake.
12. Place the tarte tartin on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. (Really do this, because the rhubarb/sugar layer will lead a bit) Then place it into the oven for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
13. Insert a toothpick into the center of the cake: if it comes out clean and top springs back when touched, your cake is ready.
14. Let cool for 10 minutes. This is a must, because the rhubarb layer will be too hot to handle. Run a knife around edge of the cake, and invert onto a wire rack. Let the tarte tartin cool completely.
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When I checked my tarte tartin in the oven, there was a large puddle caramel around my springform. This sight made me fear about the rhubarb layer, so when it was time for me to turn the tarte tartin upsidedown, I was really nervous. Thank God it turned out well! The rhubarb looked and tasted perfect. In fact, the entire thing tasted delicious! It is has a nicely balanced taste with some sweet and some sour elements. There are different textures in the layers, which complement each other so well. So I guess you could say this first tarte tartin was a succes!
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I would definetely recommend making this cake while rhubarb is still in season, I loved it and I am sure you will too.

Love, Emily

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