Mini Rhubarb Crepe Cake
GUYS. I got the craziest email the other day. I had a pretty hectic day and didn't check my personal email until right before heading to bed. As I was scrolling through I saw the subject line: Great American Baking Show. OMG. What?!!!!! I read the email and it was a casting person saying that they found me through Instagram and wanted to speak to me about possibly auditioning for the show. OMGOMGOMGOMG WHAT IS HAPPENING? At first I thought it was fake. Like it has to be fake. But after getting many second opinions I'm convinced that it is legit. I spent the next 30 minutes dancing around my apartment and annoying the crap out of Reuben before bed. I'm easily excitable. I went straight to imagining baking in the tent and Mary Berry telling me that she finds my biscuits delightful! What a dream!
But then reality set in and I realized that I'm not really a baker. lol. Well I would never claim to be a baker. I love cake. And I love playing with butter and sugar. But technical and precise are not words that describe me. I would feel much more comfortable being on Chopped. I've watched The Great British Bake Off (mainly while at the gym) and those people are so talented! I can't handle it. How do they just know how to do everything??! Is there another side of the show where the contestants practice a single recipe over and over again in between filming? Do they have the recipes printed out somewhere? Or have they memorized everything? These questions give me anxiety. I also realized that I am the least competitive person EVER. I was that kid in dodge ball that tried to get out early so I didn't have to play or god forbid be the last person standing and have to face off against someone like Reuben, who lives for competitive sports. Ugh, that scenario also gives me anxiety. I asked him about this once and he said he wouldn't even think twice about striking me hard with a dodgeball. That's true love, folks.
I told my Mom about the email and she just laughed for a solid minute. It's really not THAT hilarious mom.... : )
99% of me is telling me that this is a horrible idea. I'm extremely under-qualified. I don't know how to make meraingue, which I feel like is critical. I mean, I haven't even called the woman back. And it's not like they're straight up asking me to compete. And they probably emailed like a million people... did you get this email too?? Despite all of that, one teeny tiny part of me really wants to just commit to getting on this show. Like, maybe I can fake it until I make it? Or something... who knows! I'll keep you update if this progresses any further than this email.
If there was a crepe cake challenge, I feel pretty confident I would at least survive that week! If you're looking to make a 20 layer cake, this is definitely the way to go. Then if you make it a mini cake, it's really not as intimidating. On Sunday afternoon, I put on the "French Bistro" spotify playlist, pretended I was in Ratatouille, and flipped a bunch of mini crepes. Then I layered the crepes with sweet fluffly whipped cream and tangy rhubarb compote. Rhubarb should be allowed to be the leading actor in more recipes. It really doesn't need strawberries to make a dessert sing. The rhubarb compote is also insanely easy to make. I highly recommend that you double the recipe and save some for fancy yogurt bowls or toast! This Mini Rhubarb Crepe Cake is probably the most springy thing I've ever made! It's so cute!
Mini Rhubarb Crepe Cake
makes one 6" crepe cake
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
2 cups of milk
2 tbsp oil
1/3 cup water
butter or oil for cooking
1/2 pound of rhubarb (about 5 stalks)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp of orange liqueur (optional)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp of beet powdered for color (optional)
Prepare your batter first. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Mix together eggs, milk, oil and water in another bowl. Slowly whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until there are no more lumps. Let the batter rest in the fridge for an hour while you prepare your fillings.
Trim and cut your rhubarb into 1/2" pieces. Toss chopped rhubarb with sugar in a small bowl. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once butter is melted add in chopped rhubarb and sugar. Allow to cook undisturbed for 2 minutes, then give it a stir and cook for another 10 minutes until soft and jammy. Take a potato masher and gently mash the rhubarb compote until semi smooth. Remove from heat and place compote in a heat proof container and allow to full cool.
Pour cream, sugar, and beet powder into a large bowl. Whip with an electric hand mixer until stiff peaks form. Place in the fridge to chill while you prepare your crepes. Beet powder was just for color. If you don't have beet powder, you food coloring or not color at all.
Heat an 6"-8" nonstick frying pan, lightly greased with butter or oil, over medium heat. Pour in a little less than 1/4 cup of batter and swirl to cover the whole pan. Allow to cook for 15-20 seconds, until the edge get slightly brown and crisp. flip and cook for another 15 seconds. Remove from pan and allow to cool on a baking sheet or wire rack. Repeat with remaining batter. You should get around 23-25 crepes. You'll need about 20 layers so there's wiggly room for a few crepe flops or snacks.
Allow all the crepes to completely cool before assembling. Place one crepe on a platter. Layer on 2 tbsp of whipped cream. Place on another crepe and layer on a tablespoon of compote. Repeat crepe layers with alternating fillings of whipped cream and compote. Top the cake with one last layer of whipped cream and some peels of raw rhubarb if you have extra.
Serve and enjoy! I recommend placing the cake in the fridge or the freezer for a few minutes to make it easier to cut!