It's a little late for berry season (silly weather!), but it is, oh, so good. On some mornings in the northwest it makes more sense to eat a little cereal with my berries than a few berries with my cereal. Yum. I have had strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. I have eaten them fresh, made jam and preserves, and am now baking of them.
So, I baked it up with the last pound of the berries I picked at Knapp's and am planning on whipping up some variations soon. It's easy and simple, too. I have decided that this is the kind of cake I like--forget the fussy and complicated. I want a cake (and food generally) to show off its perfect ingredients, instead of covering up blander or tired ingredients.
Covering up ingredients or getting too fussy is all too common now. No wonder so many of us have forgotten what a really sweet strawberry or a garden-ripe tomato (forget that "vine-ripened" stuff that still tastes pretty bland but has the stem still on it) tastes like. Cooking should show off the ingredients and only in doing so show off the skill of the cook. If the ingredients are good, even an average cook becomes genius--and can take credit for a little bit of what nature has already done.
On to it, then.
Rustic Strawberry Cake
6 tablespoons butter (plus for greasing pan)
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pound strawberries, hulled and halved
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 10-inch pie plate. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together into a medium bowl.
Put butter and 1 cup sugar in medium bowl, mix on medium high speed of electric mixer until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. reduce speed to medium-low; mix in egg, milk and vanilla.
Reduce speed to low; gradually mix in flour mixture. Transfer batter to buttered pie plate. Arrange strawberries on top of batter cut side down and as close together as possible. Sprinke remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar over berries.
Bake cake 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 325 degrees. Bake until cake is golden brown and firm to the touch, about 1 hour. Let cool in pie plate on a wire rack. Cut into wedges.
Great with ice cream or whipped cream.
Use almond extract with strawberries and add 1/2 cup slivered almonds to batter.
Use raspberries instead of strawberries.
Use blueberries and add zest of one lemon to batter.
Use diced apple and add 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon to the batter.
Use your imagination!
What I Want
1 year ago