As soon as I saw this cake, I knew I had to make it. It’s just the right amount of complicatedness (yes, its a word – I checked) for me. Simple ingredients and simple preparation for a busy girl like me.
Moist buttermilk cake flavored with lemon zest and sweet blackberries just sounds amazing. Its not overpowering sweetness but sweetness in perfect proportions. It tasted amazing too.
However before I go on, I need to level with you. I can’t take credit for this recipe. It was developed by Bon Appétit and featured in their July 2011 edition – its pretty perfect. Here’s the process and the recipe is at the end. Enjoy!
Blackberries sprinkled with sugar to get them macerating – fancy word meaning to breakdown. We use sugar in this instance to macerate the blackberries.
Just set them aside and mix up your dry ingredients. I sifted mine a few times to ensure that everything is light and airy. I didn’t take a photo, I find flour visually boring.
Next up your wet ingredients. Cream your butter and sugar until light and fluffy – this is a very important step.
Add your room temperature eggs, vanilla and zest.
You want to alternate adding your dry ingredients and buttermilk, start first with your dry and end with your dry.
Add your batter on top of the berries.
Smooth it around and make sure the berries are covered. Pop it into the oven.
p.s. see my note at the end about baking time.
Hot out of the oven.
Place your serving dish over the top and flip the cake onto it. Berries should be on the top. Peel back the parchment.
A closer look.
Dust with powdered sugar while still warm.
A close up. Can you see the zest in the cake? It created a nice balance with the berries.
A closer, close-up.
A couple of notes on this thing – 1) it bakes in less time than the recipe states, mine was done in 55 minutes so at 45 minutes start checking it with a cake tester 2) its better served a little warm 3) I did run it past the ultimate baking connoisseur (my dad, who was the beneficiary of my mother’s superhuman culinary skills for 35+ years) for feedback and he said that it needed cream or custard served with it – which is a typical response from a New Zealander but I do tend to agree with him in this instance. Happy baking!
Blackberry Buttermilk Cake
• 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan and parchment
• 2 1/3 cups cake flour (sifted, then measured) plus more for pan
• 2 1/2 cups (10 ounces) fresh blackberries
• 1/4 cup plus 1 1/3 cups sugar
• 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
• 3/4 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
• 3 large eggs, room temperature
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
• 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
• 1 cup well-shaken buttermilk
• Powdered sugar (for dusting)
• Special equipment: Use a 9″–10″-diameter springform pan.
Position a rack in middle of oven and preheat to 350°. Butter pan; line bottom with a round of parchment paper. Butter parchment. Dust with flour; tap out excess. Arrange berries in a single layer in bottom of pan; sprinkle evenly with 1/4 cup sugar.
Sift 2 1/3 cups flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda into a medium bowl; set aside. Using an electric mixer, beat 3/4 cup butter and remaining 1 1/3 cups sugar in a large bowl at medium-high speed, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl, until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla and zest. Reduce speed to low; beat in flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with buttermilk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with flour mixture and beating just until incorporated. Pour batter over berries in pan; smooth top.
Bake until cake is golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour 25 minutes. Let cool in pan set on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then run a thin, sharp knife around edge of pan to loosen. Remove pan sides. Invert cake onto rack and remove pan bottom; peel off parchment. Dust top generously with powdered sugar and let cool completely.