Start your day with refreshing breakfast cake

The recipe for Buttermilk Blueberry Breakfast Cake can be adapted for different fruits. It easily can be changed to use blackberries, strawberries, raspberries or what you have available.

Have you ever wished some days you could just have cake for breakfast?

You can if you decide to make a breakfast or a coffee cake. With berries coming into season, this is the perfect time to prepare a breakfast cake. Today’s recipe is Buttermilk Blueberry Breakfast Cake.

The beauty of this recipe is that it can be changed with different berries. You easily can change blueberries to blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, or even cranberries depending on the time of year and your preference. You even can use frozen berries, just don’t let the berries thaw.

The batter can be made the night before, placed in the refrigerator and baked the next morning. Or you can bake the cake and freeze and serve it at a later time as it freezes well. Using buttermilk in this recipe results in a super moist and delicious cake.

Remember you can make your own buttermilk. It’s very simple.

For every cup of buttermilk needed in a recipe, simply add 1 or 2 tablespoons of vinegar or lemon juice and let the milk stand for at least five to 10 minutes. This recipe calls for ½ cup of buttermilk. To make ½ cup add 2 teaspoons of vinegar to a measuring cup and add enough milk to make ½ cup.

Mix the sugar and softened butter together until light and fluffy. The process, called creaming, should take about three minutes. Add the wet and dry ingredients alternately to the butter/sugar mixture after it has been creamed. When adding the dry and wet ingredients to the butter/sugar mixture always add dry, wet, dry. Adding all the wet ingredients at once will cause the batter to separate. Adding all the dry ingredients at once will make the batter too thick.

If the batter is too thick, you are more likely to overmix causing a tougher cake instead of a tender one.

Always stop and scrape down the batter to make sure all ingredients are incorporated. Once all your batter is mixed, fold in the berries.

To keep the berries from all sinking to the bottom of the pan, use ¼ cup flour to coat the berries and gently fold the berries into the batter and then spread the batter into the baking pan.

You can use either an 8- or 9-inch square baking pan. An 8-inch pan will result in a thicker slice. I used a 9-inch pan.

The recipe says to bake the cake for 35 to 45 minutes at 350 degrees. I baked mine for 20 minutes and then covered the pan with aluminum foil to keep the top from browning too much. I set my timer for 15 more minutes. My cake was not done. I baked it an additional 10 more minutes and it was done. The recipe does state that it can take up to 50 minutes. Keep checking your cake and testing it with a toothpick. When inserted, the toothpick should be clean when your cake is done.

Instead of taking 1 tablespoon of sugar and sprinkling it on top of the batter before it goes into the oven, I chose not to add sugar to the top of mine. Instead, I made a lemon glaze to add to the top of my blueberry cake.

To make the glaze, mix 1 cup of powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon of heavy cream or milk and 2 teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice.

After the cake cools for about 15 minutes, spread the glaze on top and enjoy.

Buttermilk Blueberry Breakfast Cake

½ cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature

Zest from 1 large lemon

1 cup granulated sugar (set aside 1 tablespoon for sprinkling)

1 egg, room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups all-purpose flour (set aside ¼ cup to toss with the blueberries)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups fresh blueberries

½ cup buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Using a stand mixer or hand-held mixer, cream the butter with the lemon zest and the 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon of sugar until light and fluffy.

Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined.

Meanwhile, toss the blueberries with ¼ cup of flour and set aside, then whisk together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt.

Add half of the flour mixture to the batter and stir with spatula to incorporate. Add all of the buttermilk. Stir. Add remaining flour, and stir until flour is absorbed. Fold in the blueberries. Leave excess flour from the blueberry bowl behind.

Grease an 8- or 9-inch square baking pan. Spread the batter into the pan. Sprinkle the batter with the remaining tablespoon of sugar. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes – a 9-inch pan will be done in closer to 35 minutes; an 8-inch pan usually needs 40 to 45 minutes. Check with a toothpick for doneness. If necessary, return pan to oven for a couple of more minutes.

Note: Baking for as long as 10 minutes more might be necessary, especially if you’re using a smaller pan such as an 8- by 8-inch. It’s not unusual for this cake to take 50 minutes, so just be patient.

Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving

Yield: 12 to 16 pieces.

Cherie Mingus is a retired teacher who taught family and consumer sciences at Central Hardin High School. She can be reached at cheriemingus@gmail.com.

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