Rhubarb and Pear Tray Bake with Crusty Bread Mix by Well and Good

The recipe for gluten and dairy free rhubarb and pear tray bake is nearly identical to apple and rhubarb upside down slices published earlier. Two differences include the use of fresh rhubarb and pear mix as the fruit component of the recipe, and gluten free Crusty Bread Mix from Well and Good as the dry ingredient for the batter. The first tray bake recipes with the universal batter, as I called it, were very good, but using Crusty bread mix to make the batter, resulted in even better product with a very light, airy and springy texture. Both the taste and the texture of the slice surprise again and again, when considering that no fats are added to the batter. The moisture is provided by pure apple puree which I use very often in my baking to combat the typical dry feel of gluten free textures.

The use of Crusty Bread Mix as a flour ingredient makes the batter to have lighter texture, with more volume, and thus demands less batter for the same size tray, compared to original bake, based on Well and Good gluten free Self-Raising flour. I used slices of fresh ripe pears on the perimeter of the fruit layer to bake a cake with a neater look. Another simple explanation – I had only 3 rhubarb sticks left and had to improvise. Fresh pears delighted me in my previous bakes and I had plenty of them to spare.

Ingredients:

for 20cm x 30cm tray

batter

  • 2 large eggs
  • 100g unsweetened pure apple puree
  • 90g sugar
  • 10g vanilla sugar
  • 120g gluten free Crusty Bread Mix by Well and Good
  • 6g baking powder
  • zest of 1 lemon

fruit layer

  • 3 large rhubarb sticks, chopped in 1 cm pieces
  • 2 ripe pears, cored and sliced, with skin on
  • 2-3 table spoons of sugar
  • 20-30g apple puree
  • butter to grease baking paper for lining the tray (for dairy free version use coconut oil
  • apricot jam to glaze the cake after baking (optional, I did not use it)

Preparation:

  • generously grease the sheet of baking paper to line 18/20cm x 28/30 cm baking tray
  • place baking paper on the bottom of the pan, make sure it sticks to the bottom and stays in place
  • use 20-30g apple puree, spread it on baking paper (you can add vanilla extract or paste to apple puree before applying it)
  • place pear slices to make the edges of fruit layer
  • chop rhubarb sticks in 1 cm or even smaller pieces
  • spread rhubarb evenly in the middle
  • sprinkle rhubarb with sugar, you can use the mix of sugar with cinnamon powder
  • add baking powder to Crusty Bread Mix, mix well
  • beat eggs, apple puree and sugar on high for 10min,  until the mixture thickens, becomes pale and nearly triples is volume
  • transfer wet ingredients to a wide bowl
  • add lemon zest
  • add Crusty Bread Mix with baking powder into wet ingredients, make sure that dry ingredients are well combined with the mixture
  • spoon the batter over rhubarb and pears, the batter can be poured, but it is better to spoon it, for easier spreading it and make it level, however, try to avoid creation of air pockets
  • flatten the surface of the batter with spatula or palette knife
  • bake in preheated to 165-170C fan forced oven, for 35 min (in my oven), or until the surface of the bake is golden brown and firm to touch
  • rest cake in the baking dish for 5-10min
  • cover baked slice with a sheet of baking paper
  • put a wire rack on top
  • turn the cake over to wire rack
  • gently take the pan off
  • carefully peel the sheet of baking paper from the sides first and then from the top of the bake
  • apply jam to a hot cake with a brush, fill in some gaps between rhubarb pieces with jam
  • alternatively (that’s what I did) take soft silicon spatula or palette knife and gently work on rhubarb layer, its pieces are soft and will disintegrate to fill all cavities

You can cut this bake while still warm. It is perfect served with yogurt, whipped cream or ice cream. I like it fully cooled down, the flavours are more prominent. The cake retains its soft and airy texture on the second day.

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