17 July, 2014
Summer Fruit Buttermilk Cake
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon lemon zest
½ stick unsalted butter, softened
⅔ cup sugar plus 1 ½ Tablespoons sugar, divided
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
½ cup well-shaken buttermilk
1 cup fresh summer fruit, either blueberries, raspberries or blackberries
Preheat oven to 400° with rack in the middle of the oven.
Butter and flour a 9 inch round cake pan or line the pan with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest.
In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat together the butter and ⅔ cup of sugar at medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the vanilla, and then add the egg and beat well.
At low speed, add to the flour mixture to the sugar mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Beat until just combined – don’t overbeat.
Spoon batter into cake pan, smoothing the top and filling the pan evenly. Scatter the berries of your choice over the batter. Sprinkle with the remaining ½ Tablespoon of sugar.
Bake until cake is golden, about 25-30 minutes.
Cool the finished cake in its pan for about 10 minutes, then turn onto a rack and until barely warm, about 10 to 15 minutes. Invert onto a plate.
Adapted from a recipe by Melissa Roberts as published in Gourmet Magazine, June 2009.
No frosting or icing needed. If you want to make it a little prettier for presentation, place a doily over the top of the cake and lightly sprinkle powdered sugar over the doily. Gently lift the doily, place the doily on a clean plate and transfer the cake on top of the doily. Serve while warm, if possible.
The berries tend to sink to the bottom as the cake bakes. Larger blueberries tend to perform better than the smaller, wild ones, but I have used both sizes and they taste great.
An easy way to cut the cake into slices is to use a plastic knife or a bread knife.
I cut my cake into 6 pieces, enjoy one piece warm and put the other 5 into Ziploc bags and freeze them. When you want to enjoy a piece from the freezer, just put it in the microwave for 8 seconds or use the defrost button.