Ethan from Madison, WI (2018 Week 1: Cakes)




Madison, WI

Baking Challenge

Upside Down Cake

Give your cake a name based on the ingredients and decoration – and tell us about the origin of your recipe.

Chocolate Rhubarb Upside Down Cake. I don’t particularly like cake but my grandma’s devils food cake recipe with oil used as fat instead of butter is one of my favorites. I thought chocolate and rhubarb would be a nice combination partly because I really wanted to do one of those Pinterest-pretty upside down rhubarb cakes. So I cobbled together a couple of recipes online.

Tell us about your proudest moment – or humble failure – in this week’s baking challenge.

This was an unmitigated disaster from the start. At some point, I remembered a nice cake I made with red wine a while back, and lacking red wine, I added a bit of red wine vinegar to the batter. As any six-year old with a penchant for making backyard volcanoes will tell you, vinegar and baking soda in a contained space sorta… explode. I rushed to make another batter, and honestly even if I hadn’t overbaked it, it turns out that rhubarb and chocolate are *not* the best of friends. The fact that the top of the cake looks like overcooked broccoli stems also does not help matters. Lesson learned. I will be much more careful about cake experimentation in the future. And not just for the sake of not having to wipe batter off of all exposed surfaces in the kitchen.

Describe how you added a Wisconsin twist to your creation.

I used wisconsin-grown rhubarb from my sister’s backyard.

How did you do?

Totally failed … and still laughing.