Thursday, June 7, 2012

Blueberry Ribbon Cake

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Blueberry ribbon cake
Blueberry ribbon cake

Ok, so the title is a little bit misleading.  That fat layer of blueberries in the middle is definitely not a ribbon, more like a cummerbund.  I couldn't see Blueberry Cummerbund Cake rolling off the tongue very easily though, so I will just pretend it is a ribbon.

Cover the bottom with half the batter, add the blueberries, and top with the rest of the batter
Cover the bottom with half the batter, add the blueberries,
and top with the rest of the batter

What really matters is that it tastes amazing.  My family gobbled by the handful 3 quarts of fresh round blueberries this weekend and I had to hide the 3 cups that I used in this cake.  I remember when I saw  Northwest blueberries for the first time - I was convinced they would not be tasty because compared to the Alaskan blueberries I grew up on they were enormous.  I was positive a berry the size of my thumb could not have deep flavor and would be a watered-down imitation, at best.  I was very happy to be wrong.

Summer blueberries are here
Summer blueberries are here

This cake highlights all that blueberry goodness.  Surrounded on the top and bottom by delicate buttery batter the berries do not need any added sweetness.  I put them in as is and then had to wait and wait and wait for the hour it takes to bake.  Then we all had to wait a little bit more because this does need to cool for about 20 minutes before serving.  It is great warm from the oven but just as fantastic the next morning with coffee while sitting on the deck.  Perfect.

Blueberry Ribbon Cake
Fat summer blueberries are baked with a little cake to hold them together in this blueberry ribbon cake.
  • 3 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup (one stick) butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 (F) and grease a 9 inch round cake pan. In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt, then set it aside.
  2. In your stand mixer or using a hand mixer in a large bowl, cream the butter for several minutes until the texture is fluffy and the color of the butter has lightened a lot. Add in the cup of sugar and continue blending for several minutes until the butter and sugar is creamy.
  3. Add in the eggs, one at a time, and mix for a couple of minutes after each one. With the mixer still running, add in the vanilla and then add in the buttermilk. Continue to whip together until everything is smooth again.
  4. Turn off the mixer and add in half of the dry ingredients. Mix again just until moistened, then add in the second half. Combine everything one last time until the batter is smooth and all the dry ingredients are well mixed.
  5. This will be a stiff cake batter, almost like a butter cream icing consistency. It will not be pour-able but it will be soft and easily spread. Put half of the batter into the middle of your cake pan and then using a spatula carefully spread it to the edges, forming an even layer.
  6. Sprinkle the 3 cups of blueberries over the batter, keeping them evenly distributed. Try not to push the berries down into the batter so that the ribbon is clear when the cake is done.
  7. Put the rest of the batter over the blueberries, working from the center out. Again try not to push down too much and work all the way to the edges of the pan.
  8. Bake in the oven for 55-60 minutes, just until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out without any cake batter on it. You really don't want to overcook this cake. Once it is done move the pan to a wire rack and cool for 20 minutes.
  9. Serve warm or let the cake cool completely. Enjoy!
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: one 9" round cake, serves 8 - 10

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