Summer is apparently here in the Hub. It was 71 degrees when I woke up at 7 am Monday morning. That makes for some uncomfortable cooking temperatures around here. To top it off, we are having a bit of a water emergency in these parts. I have been forced to boil all water for dish washing. It’s really really annoying. Let’s hope the powers that be are on top of this.
I don’t like to throw things away. I think I may actually be on the hoarding spectrum. Very high functioning, mind you, but on the spectrum. Luckily, however, my need to have organization in my house and a permanent (tidy) place to keep stuff, means I have become relatively decent at purging. When I realized that it was not practical to move my collection of back issues from the eleventeen food magazines I receive monthly, I thought I would try to consolidate. So I started tearing out every recipe that sounded even remotely interesting, from every magazine I had (after reading thoroughly from cover to cover of course) and painstakingly cutting around the article and accompanying photo and gluing them on to card stock that I then slipped into sheet protectors and put into binders organized by type of food. I just read that sentence and feel perhaps there is something seriously wrong with me. Apparently I do not care for the interwebs which also houses every one of these recipes. As you can imagine, this was time consuming, and while I stayed on top of it long enough to create a minimum of a dozen binders, I have, in recent years, fallen behind. All this is to say I was digging through a box of recipes I had torn out at some point (and purging many of them) and found a recipe for raspberry buttermilk cake from the June 2009 issue of Gourmet. (Deb from Smitten Kitchen, it turns out, also made this in a more timely fashion…)
I have made this three times, and it is just so so good. It comes together in minutes, and bakes in no time at all, and you are encouraged to eat it when it is still warm, so in less than an hour you can go from raw ingredients to a perfect delicious cake. All the ingredients are ones you may have on hand, or are easily acquired. This is easily adaptable, and therefore I am not even going to call it raspberry buttermilk cake, because that sounds so limiting. I have made it with raspberries and blackberries, and I hope to make it with blueberries sooner rather than later. I also added citrus zest because I felt like it. I highly recommend it. A raspberry-orange zest combo was sweet and delicious and perfect for dessert or with tea, and a blackberry-lime version was great with vanilla ice cream, but was tart enough that it would have made a great Sunday morning breakfast treat. What I am saying is that you should make this and quick. You won’t regret it. I might do the same.
Buttermilk Cake with Berries
Adapted from Gourmet, June 2009
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 oz. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup plus 1 1/2 tbl sugar, divided
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp citrus zest (optional but I wouldn’t leave it out)
1 large egg
1/2 cup well shaken buttermilk
1 cup fresh berries of your choice
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Butter and flour a 9″ cake pan, or spray with flour cooking spray.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. Beat butter and 2/3 cup sugar together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about two minutes. Beat in vanilla and zest. Add egg and beat well. At low speed, beat in flour mixture in three batches, alternating with buttermilk and beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat until just combined.
Spoon batter into cake pan and scatter berries evenly over the top. Sprinkle with remaining 1 1/2 tbl sugar and bake for about 2o minutes until cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto cooling rack for an additional 10-15 minutes. Invert back onto serving plate and enjoy!
Update! Apparently our water is back! Though it may be too late for me. My stomach isn’t quite right. Blerg.