Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Blueberry Crumb Cake

Blueberry Crumb Cake

I'm pretty sure i've made every recipe with streusel from Dorie Greenspan's Baking From my Home to Yours.

I'm looking forward to returning to Pittsburgh, but i'll miss my family's enthusiasm for good breakfast cakes. This Blueberry Crumb Cake has been out of the oven for less than three hours and it's already more than half gone.

The cake batter was very thick- so much so that I thought the amount of liquid was a misprint. I didn't worry too much though; this cookbook is extremely reliable. I love the streusel- it's golden, crunchy, and rich with brown sugar.

The recipe lends itself well to alteration too. I used toasted almonds instead of walnuts (my brother has nut allergies) and orange zest. I'd love to try some of Dorie's suggestions for other fruits, like raspberries, cubed peaches, or apricots.

Blueberry Crumb Cake
adapted from Baking From my Home to Yours

For the crumbs:
5 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

For the cake:
1 pint (2 cups) blueberries (preferably fresh, or frozen, not thawed)
2 cups plus 2 tsp all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2/3 cup sugar
grated zest of 1/2 lemon or 1/4 orange
3/4 stick (6 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8 inch square pan and put it on a baking sheet.

To make the crumbs: put all the ingredients except the nuts in a food processor and pulse just until the mixture forms clumps and curds and holds together when pressed. Scrape the topping into a bowl, stir in the nuts, and press a piece of plastic against the surface. Refrigerate until needed. (Covered well, the crumb mix can be refrigerated for up to three days.)

To make the cake: Using your fingertips, toss the blueberries and 2 tsp of the flour together in a small bowl just to coat the berries; set aside. Whisk together the remaining 2 cups flour, the baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

Working in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat the sugar with the butter at medium speed until light, about three minutes. Add the eggs, one by one, beating for about 1 minutes after each addition, then beat in the vanilla extract. Don't be concerned if the batter looks curdled- it will soon smooth out. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture and the buttermilk alternately, the flour in three parts and the buttermilk in 2 (begin and end with they dry ingredients.) You will have a thick, creamy batter. With a rubber spatula, gently stir in the berries.

Scrape the batter into the buttered pan and smooth the top gently with the spatula. Pull the crumb mix from the fridge and, with your fingertips, break it into pieces. There's no need to try to get even pieces- these are crumbs, they're supposed to be every shape and size. Scatter the crumbs over the batter, pressing them down ever so slightly.

Bake for 55-65 minutes, or until the crumbs are golden and a thin knife inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool just until it is warm or until it reaches room temperature.

1 comment:

Cedar said...

That looks incredibly delicious! I love crumb cake!