Traybakes always remind me of school cake sales: homely, warm and unpretentious. They’re the go-to bake if you’re feeding a crowd, and I love that they don’t require too much by way of decoration – just a drizzle of icing or swirl of buttercream, and you’re good to go. This rhubarb and elderflower number is an easy one to put together, and has a really light and airy spring-time feel.
Rhubarb and elderflower traybake
Prep 25 min
Cook 35 min
20g caster sugar
For the sponge
200g unsalted butter, softened
250g caster sugar
1 lemon, zest finely grated
3 tbsp elderflower cordial
3 large eggs
260g plain flour
¼ tsp salt
1½ tsp baking powder
100g soured cream, at room temperature
For the icing
100g icing sugar
2 -3 tbsp elderflower cordial
Grease and line a 20cm x 25cm baking tin with greaseproof paper, leaving enough overhang to help you lift out the cake later, and heat the oven to 180C (160C fan)/350F/gas 4.
Wash the rhubarb, trim off the ends, then chop the stalks into 5cm chunks. Add to a bowl with the caster sugar, toss to coat and set aside.
Cream the butter, sugar and lemon zest in a stand mixer or with an electric whisk for three to five minutes, until pale and creamy. Pour in the cordial, beat for a few more seconds to combine. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
In a separate bowl, mix the flour, salt and baking powder, then pour half of this into the egg mixture and mix on low speed until just combined. Pour in the soured cream, mix again briefly, then stir in the remaining flour.
Spoon the batter into the tin, smooth the surface, then top with the rhubarb without pushing the pieces into the batter.
Bake for 35-40 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean, then remove and leave to cool completely.
For the icing, mix the icing sugar with enough cordial to make a thick, but pourable glaze. Drizzle this over the cooled cake, then slice and serve.