A rhubarb cake-crisp – fresh rhubarb baked with a cake mix.

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The rhubarb and the strawberries in the images and recipe that follow, came from the grocery store, where they often appear on shelves soon after the snow melts.
Its past the beginning of rhubarb season now also – though still available at farms locally that grow it. It is most often eaten in spring, though we’ve purchased it quite late into June it seems, and maybe even longer. Rhubarb is wonderful in a traditional rhubarb crisp, but this recipe is a sweet delight also – tasty comfort food.
A few days back was the Full Strawberry Moon (now at 96%, according to the Farmer’s Almanac), and its time to plant root crops. Its that time of year when chipmunk babies are growing up, out playing – and probably learning to plant plants. I am learning, but might just know less about it than they do (many plants get planted here and there it is said, thanks to chipmunks, and other small mammals).

I’ve been waiting to make a homemade cake mix for this recipe, but have not – a Betty Crocker lemon cake mix is the mix in the images below, as that is what my mother and I used for these images. I will check a Betty Crocker cookbook for a recipe, for anyone wanting to use Betty Crocker’s recipe.* This cake mix tastes great with the recipe – though, as it has partially hydrogenated oils in it, which people feel differently about, also at the end of this blog, I’ve included a dry mix written looking at Betty Crocker’s cookbook.

INGREDIENTS:
a homemade or store bought cake mix, lemon, yellow, or possibly chocolate
a spoonful of strawberry jam
1 pack (Knox) unflavored gelatin (considered increasing to 2 packs – though, one worked. Each package has 1/4 ounce of gelatin per envelope).
2 cups water
chopped rhubarb (as needed)
chopped strawberries (about 2 cups)

(cut some of the rhubarb and strawberries smaller – to mix with the gelatin, and then that, to mix into the larger chunks, as then some of the fruit will cook down faster, and therefore boil up into the cake mix more rapidly. Hypothetically, thats how it worked anyway. Because this recipe was a good recipe – with the store bought cake mix. )
butter – 1/2 to 2/3 stick.
butter to butter the pan



TOOLS:
1 baking dish to hold a good sized rhubarb crisp – (2 inches deep, by 8.5″ x 13″), which is about (5cm deep, by 21 or 22 cm wide by 33 cm long)
1 baking sheet under dish, in case it boils over in the oven
cutting board and sharp knife
measuring cup for liquids
pan or pans (for double boiler) – depending on preference, for melting butter

The photos are in order, as it is put together.

Best served cold – the gelatin will set up.

A homemade cake mix – try it out before serving it to company please – it is an untested recipe, when used as a crisp topping.

Cake-Crisp Topping (inspired by Betty Crocker):
2 cups flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/2 t baking powder
1 t salt
1/2 t lemon juice
1/2 t dried lemon peel
possibly an 1/4 of a teaspoon, to a teaspoon of corn oil.

Mix all ingredients together, in the order given.

Dogs and Rhubarb:
Rhubarb stems (only the stems should be in the cake), are ok. Strawberries are healthy. The remaining ingredients are fine if using the home-made cake mix above, inspired by Betty Crocker’s cake recipes in her Picture Cook Book – in a small quantity that is – just for a treat – and assuming the chocolate cake was not used. Chocolate from cacao beans is not good for dogs.