Last night I was chatting with my friend, Michelle, swamping fun/horror kitchen stories. We were remembering that both of us were Type A, perfectionist chefs (I use the term “chefs” loosely in reference to me) in our youth. Ahhh, the good old days.
When I was a teenager (prehistoric times), I graduated as a baker into taking on the responsibility of Christmas dinner dessert. Every year, regardless of difficulty, I would choose the cover of Gourmet or Bon Appetit Magazines. I would slave for hours (sometimes days depending on the recipe) in order to create a fabulous cake that matched the cover perfectly. And when I say perfectly, I mean perfectly.
If one chocolate leaf or one berry or one toffee shard was out of place, I was not happy. I vividly remember a beautiful chocolate layered cake with white vanilla frosty, topped with chocolate covered leaves, and almond slivers encircling the sides. I spent over and hour placing each single almond slice gently into the frosting so that the entire cake was encompassed. The result of my blood, sweat, and tears… “Oh honey, that is exquisite!” (mom’s comment) and “Oh yeah, it was pretty good.” (my brothers’ reactions). Really?
I was COO COO CRAZY back then. We’re lucky now if I measure the vanilla or lemon juice or lemon zest. And there is no way you’ll get me to sift flour. With age, comes wisdom and a complete lack of care.
Okay, that was a random story which has absolutely nothing to do with this cake. This cake is super easy and wicked good! My only note is the cake took about an hour and 5 minutes or so to cook in my convection oven. So just be prepared to be homebound for a bit.
Otherwise, total winner!
Blueberry Lemon Cake (recipe care of natashaskitchen.com)
INGREDIENTS: 2 large eggs, 1 cup (210 grams) granulated sugar, 1 cup (8oz) sour cream, ½ cup light olive oil or vegetable oil, 1 tsp vanilla extract, ¼ tsp salt, 2 cups (260 grams) all-purpose flour, 2 tsp baking powder, 1 medium lemon (zest and juice, divided), ½ Tbsp corn starch, 16 oz (450g) fresh blueberries, Powdered sugar to dust the top (optional)
DIRECTIONS: Lightly butter a 9-inch springform pan and line the bottom with parchment. Preheat Oven to 375˚F. Beat 2 eggs and 1 cup sugar with whisk attachment on high speed 5 min, or until light in color and thick. Add 1 cup sour cream, ½ cup oil, 1 tsp vanilla, ¼ tsp salt and whisk on low speed until well combined. Whisk together the 2 cups flour with 2 tsp baking powder then add to batter ⅓ at a time, whisking to incorporate with each addition. Finally, add 1 Tbsp lemon juice and ½ Tbsp zest. Rinse blueberries and drain well. In a medium bowl, toss blueberries with ½ Tbsp corn starch and 1 tsp lemon juice, stirring until well combined and no dry white cornstarch remains. Pour half of batter into prepared springform pan and spread evenly. Top with half of the blueberries. Spread with remaining batter then sprinkle the rest of the blueberries evenly over the top, pushing them slightly into the batter (about halfway). Bake at 375˚F for 45 to 55 min (mine was perfect at 55 min), or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cake rest in the pan 15-20 min then remove ring and cool until room temp or just warm. Serve dusted with powdered sugar.