Yesterday was a perfect day for baking here in the Land of Steady Habits–chilly with desperately needed pouring rain. What better time to let the oven help warm the house with something sweet and delicious?

When my #1 taster says, “That’s a keeper!” I know I’m onto something. This blueberry almond cream cake is a riff on my own favorite muffin recipe, but with blueberries, a layer of almond cream and a streusel topping. Whether you call it breakfast or dessert, I hope you might call it a keeper, too.

BLUEBERRY ALMOND CREAM CAKE

Streusel Topping
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup light brown sugar, packed
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons cold butter*

Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl; cut in butter with a knife–or fork together. Set aside.

*I made my streusel with softened butter the second time and melted butter the first. It was the consistency of wet sand both times. Though it was rather Zen-like dropping pieces of streusel over the top of the cake, doing it properly with cold butter is probably a better bet. Hmm, a better butter bet!

Almond Cream
4 oz. cream cheese, softened (Neufchâtel is fine)
1 teaspoon almond extract
¼ cup powdered sugar

In a separate bowl, beat all ingredients until smooth. Set aside.

The Cake
½ cup butter, softened
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
1 cup sour cream
4 tablespoons orange juice
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
6 oz. fresh blueberries

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugars. Add eggs, vanilla and almond extracts; mix till smooth. Add sour cream and orange juice. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture gradually–I do so in 4 or 5 separate additions–till moistened.

Butter a 9″ pan. Layer half of the cake batter in pan. Top/spoon with almond cream…


Then top with blueberries…

Smooth remaining cake batter over blueberries…

Then sprinkle streusel evenly over the top…

Bake at 400 degrees F for 35 minutesor till a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Like this!

I snagged the first corner piece while it was still piping hot. Please note the NOM NOM NOM factor of the melted brown sugar!

I love the pretty blues and purples. Kinda reminds me of a killer sunset I caught last week.

Wishing you a week filled with pretty colors–both in the kitchen and outside your windows!

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