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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Blueberry Lemon Cake: Cure for the Winter Blues


Last year I went on a girls’ weekend to New York City with some of my closest friends from my grad. school days.  One of the most fun things we did was visit Alice’s Tea Cup, a quirky and girly tea room, and had afternoon tea.  It was January so it was the perfect place to get out of the cold and we had the best time drinking their delicious teas and eating their amazing scones and pastries.  Definitely go to one of their locations in New York City if you get the chance!  I was thrilled to find out that the owners recently put out a cookbook so at least I can try to recreate those lemon berry and pumpkin caramel scones (hopefully the topic of future blog posts!) on my own.  But, I saw the picture of this cake when the cookbook showed up at my door so I had to start with this one first.  It’s beautiful with the blueberries marbled throughout the pale yellow cake. 

The cake did not disappoint!  It's full of blueberries and lemon zest with a tender crumb, and topped with yummy vanilla buttercream!  If you are like we are, you are probably feeling the full weight of the January cold at this point and could use a little reminder that spring will eventually come! Make this cake and share it with someone special. Your kitchen will smell delicious and lemony!

Blueberry Lemon Cake

Ingredients:

3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp. kosher salt
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
1 ½ sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp. freshly grated lemon zest
4 eggs
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
2 ½ cups blueberries
Vanilla Buttercream  (Recipe below)

Instructions:

1.       Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly butter and flour three 8-inch round cake pans. 

2.       In a mixing bowl, sift the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together.

3.       In a large bowl, use a mixer to cream the butter and sugar.  Then add the lemon juice and zest and mix until smooth.  Add the eggs, mixing them in one at a time, and mix until fully combined.  With the mixer set to the lowest speed, alternate adding the dry mixture and the buttermilk, and mix until the batter is smooth, scraping the bowl down occasionally.  Use a spatula to gently fold in the blueberries. 

4.       Fill in the three cake pans evenly with the batter, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean.  Set aside on a wire rack to cool completely before removing from the pans. 

5.       To build the cake, spread some of the frosting over the layers and stack the layers; then frost the sides of the cake. 
                                                                             

Adapted from: Alice's Tea Cup: Delectable Recipes for Scones, Cakes, Sandwiches, and More from New York's Most Whimsical Tea Spot


“The Yummiest Vanilla Buttercream Frosting” from Alice’s Tea Cup

This icing IS yummy and comes together in a snap.  The consistency of this buttercream made it very easy to work with.  I’m definitely going to add this to my favorites list! This recipe makes just enough to ice an 8-inch 3 layer cake so if you use this with a larger cake make sure to double this. 

Ingredients:

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 pound confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk, at room temperature
½ tsp. pure vanilla extract

Instructions

With a mixer on medium speed, cream the butter in a large mixing bowl.  Reduce the speed to low and add the confectioners’ sugar a little bit at a time, alternating with splashes of milk and the vanilla.  Mix until the frosting is smooth.



6 comments:

  1. Gorgeous cakes all over. One question - do you eat them all on your own? :)

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  2. Thanks, heavens no! I do a lot of baking for family, friends, and some events. :)

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  3. Just made this :) Most delicious cake I've ever made! Family adored. Many thanks!

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  4. @ Libbi I'm so glad you and your family liked the cake! Its a favorite of mine too-- anything with lemon and blueberries! :)

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  5. delicious! and on a side note....lemon berry and pumpkin caramel scones? Do you mean all in one scone?!

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  6. @Rachel I just looked at my sentence and realized I could have written this more clearly. :) Alice's Tea Cup had an assortment of scones to choose from if you order the tea service and I had a lemon berry and a pumpkin caramel, both of which were fabulous. The recipes are in the Alice's Tea Cup cookbook and I'm really happy to be able to make them at home now! The pumpkin caramel is especially great.

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