Rhubarb & Orange Charlotte

Deliciously tasty rhubarb with a hint of tangy citrus flavour makes this scrumptious dessert the perfect family treat …

Serves: 8:   Cals per portion: 387;   Prep time: 35 mins;   Cook time: 1 hr 10 mins

Ingredients:

  • 2 lb (900g) fresh rhubarb
  • finely grated rind and juice of 1 small orange
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 6oz (175g) Demerara sugar
  • 1 ½ oz (40g) plain cake crumbs
  • 800g farmhouse loaf of white bread
  • 5oz (150g) butter, melted
  • 1 small egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp Demerara sugar

Step One – Using a sharp knife, trim away leaves and root ends from each rhubarb stick. Slice rhubarb into 1 in (2.5cm) long pieces. Wash rhubarb pieces thoroughly and pat dry with absorbent kitchen paper. Place the rhubarb in a large saucepan along with the orange rind and juice. Slowly bring to the boil.

Step Two – Simmer for 5 mins, stirring occasionally, until the rhubarb starts to soften. Stir in ground ginger, Demerara sugar and plain cake crumbs, then set saucepan aside. Using a sharp knife, slice the bread into ½ in (1.25cm) thick slices and remove all crusts. Discard ends of loaf.

Step Three – Grease a 2 ½ pt (1.5 litre) charlotte mould or a 6 in (15cm) round cake tin. Trim two bread slices to fit neatly inside the mould base. Brush one side of bread with melted butter. Place bread, buttered side down, in base of mould. Brush the bread with more melted butter.

Step Four – Reserving two bread slices, trim the remaining bread to fit around the side of the mould. Brush both sides of each slice with melted butter and arrange around side of mould, overlapping as you go and pushing the bread against the mould. Brush over the joins with beaten egg.

Step Five – Preheat the oven to Gas 5, 375oF, 190oC. Spoon the cooked rhubarb into the mould, pressing down against the bread.  Trim reserved bread to fit over mould as a lid. Press down to cover rhubarb.  Brush lid with beaten egg and cook in the oven for 1 hour, or until charlotte is golden brown.

Step Six – To turn out, run a palette knife around edge of charlotte and invert on a warmed serving dish. Sprinkle with Demerara sugar and serve with custard.

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