You waited a long time for this, didn’t you!  (See previous post ‘R is for rhubarb’) Well, it’s worth it because a dish of rhubarb and custard is more versatile than you think.

Remember the penny sweets from your childhood?  The sticky paper bag with Parma violets, black jacks, licorice laces and … rhubarb and custard boiled sweets.  And you can still get them!  But I digress.

All I wanted to say that rhubarb and custard is a classic British combination, delightful if made with real custard, but oh-so-horrid if not.  Here is a way to channel childhood nostalgia into an excellent cake recipe where you can use cheap custard. (Save the real stuff for a sophisticated Rhubarb Fool).


Rhubarb & custard cake
Rhubarb and Custard Cake


  • Cooked rhubarb (see previous post)
  • Softened butter, 250g (it must be soft)
  • Ready-made custard (Ambrosia or Morrisons cheap stuff), 150g pot
  • Self-raising flour, 250g
  • Baking powder, 1 tsp
  • Large eggs, 4
  • Vanilla extract, 1 tsp
  • Golden caster sugar, 250g
  • Icing sugar for dusting

To make

  1. Grease and line a 23 cm loose bottomed cake tin.
  2. Heat oven to 180C, Gas Mark 4.
  3. Reserve 3 TB of the custard in a small bowl.
  4. Beat the rest of the custard together with the butter, flour, baking powder, eggs, vanilla and sugar until smooth and creamy.
  5. Spoon one third of the mix into the tin, add some of the rhubarb, then dot with one third more of the cake mix and spread it out as well as you can.
  6. Top with some more rhubarb, then spoon over the remaining cake mix, leaving it in rough mounds and dips, rather than trying to be too neat about it.  Scatter the rest of the rhubarb over the batter, then dot the remaining custard over the top.
  7. Bake for 40 minutes until risen and golden, then cover with foil and bake for a further 15 – 20 minutes more.  It’s ready when a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  8. Cool in the tin, then dredge with icing sugar when cool.
  9. Enjoy!
Rhubarb and Custard: remember them?

This recipe comes from the Good Food magazine.

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