Rhubarb and Vanilla Mincemeat

I won’t actually post a recipe today as I followed Nigella’s “Feast” recipe…. the only differences being adding ground vanilla and in my choice of dried fruits: as you know by now, I don’t like sultanas so I used cranberries, apricots and a “mixed” bought in the organic section which included figs and goji berries! I have tried to find a direct link to add to this post but I couldn’t find any although the recipe is out there, some even giving her the credit due…


I was very pleased with myself as it is my very first attempt at any kind of mincemeat: it was delicious and promises some very nice mince pies indeed! I was worried about the rhubarb being a bit tart but not at all! Worth trying if you like making your own jams and preserves!


And very nice, they were too! 1 jar (big one) made 24 generously filled mini mince pies:

004 (3)

Biscuit Topping:

  • Beat together: 200g soft butter + 45g sugar + 2 yolks + 200g flour

And if it isn’t that time of the year, use Nutella instead as a filling: they won’t last a day!

Custard Cake with Roasted Rhubarb

I made this for the first time yesterday and when I asked my oldest boy if it was nice (he loves custard!) his reply was: ” Mum, nice doesn’t even begin to describe this!” I knew I was onto a winner!



  • 400g rhubarb, washed, trimmed and cut into 3 to 4cm sized piece
  • 25g vanilla sugar
  • Fresh custard: powder, sugar and 500ml milk
  • 190g soft butter
  • 250g self raising flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ground vanilla (if available)
  • 150g light brown sugar


For the rhubarb:

  • Preheat oven to 200°C/180°fan/ Gas 5
  • Put the rhubarb in a shallow dish and toss with the sugar
  • Make sure it is in a single layer and cover with foil
  • Roast for 15mn
  • Remove the foil, shake a little and roast for an extra 5mn
  • Drain the juices off and let it cool

For the custard:

  • Basically, follow the instructions on your custard powder tin, or buy it ready made.
  • You will need 150g + 3 or 4 tbsp (set aside for the end)

The cake:

  • Preheat oven to 180°C/160°fan/ Gas 4 and prepare a 25cm / 10″ round springform cake tin
  • In a large bowl, I used my stand mixer for this cake, beat together the custard with all the rest of the ingredients (it’s that easy!) until creamy and smooth
  • Level 1/3 of the mix on the bottom of your tin and dot with 1/3 of the rhubarb
  • Repeat twice but don’t be to neat about your cake layers, leaving a few dips
  • Finishing with a layer of rhubarb, scatter the rest of the custard (the 3 or 4 tbsp set aside) on top


  • Bake for 35 to 40mn until well risen and golden in colour
  • Cover with foil and bake for an extra 15mn: clean skewer and it springs back when touched


  • Leave to cool in the tin, it will drop a little
  • Dust with icing sugar and enjoy with custard, what else!



I think this could work with apples too! to be continued…..