A lot of cake

There is a lot of cake going on around here. One of my best friends is getting married on Friday, and I'm two cakes into my nine-cake share of the wedding production. Every morning before breakfast Sally plays her xylophone on the floor while I melt 14 ounces of chocolate and 14 ounces of butter, pour in 2 and 2/3 cups sugar, crack and whisk in 10 eggs, add a measly 2 tablespoons flour, and bake. After we've had eggs and coffee we lick the bowl, pot, whisk, and spatula, because batter that good would be a terrible thing to waste.

And then of course, there was Father's Day. After all those requests for something sweet, we thought Alex also deserved a cake. His favorite is rhubarb, so we made him a pan of my friend Sarah's rhubarb upside down cake. (You may need to scroll down, but it's there.) It's from her new cookbook, The Newlywed Cookbook, and it landed her on the Martha Stewart show. That was a good enough recommendation for me.

The secret ingredient is marshmallows, which is funny because Sarah is very much not the marshmallow type. Neither am I, which is how I ended up barefoot in Cumby's in my bathing suit and towel on my way home from the pond counting out $2.69 for a bag of Kraft Jumbo Jet Puffed Mallows. It was not a typical Sunday morning, but it was a good one, and well worth it once we tasted the cake.

For those of you tempted to skip the marshmallows (like I was), don't. They give the cake its signature texture—as it bakes the marshmallows turn into melty, oozy, delightful pockets of sweet with a little bit of burnt sugar crispness on top. The rhubarb gets soft and stays tangy, and the batter brings it all into a form that you can manage on your fork.

I'm not going to type out the recipe here, because I want you to see it on Sarah's site. She's a great writer, a great friend, and a great cook, and she deserves a visit. Because this, my friends, is a great cake.


sarah {edible living} said...

Thank you for posting my cake, sweet Elspeth! I love your commitment to better baking {for you and baby Sally!} and how much you indulge your love's sweet tooth. My grandma always lavished my granddad with his favorite sweet things and he died at age 92, tall and thin and happy, loved man.

Thanks for giving marshmallows a chance just this once.


Teresa Parker said...

So the grandkids come to visit and we too make that shameful visit to Cumby's or similar for something Jet Puffed. They roast them on sticks over the backyard fire and shovel them down until they talk about barfing and pass out. Until now, the remaining half bag of mallows slowly dissolved into a sticky clump while waiting out the rest of the summer in the pantry. Finally, a noble purpose for the leftover marshmallow. Thank you.

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