08 June 2011

Summer Fruit Cake

One of the interesting things about CSAs is that I have to figure out a way to use up all the produce I get each week.  In the past, I've planned meals for a couple of days then gotten just what I needed for those meals.  But now, I have some produce leftover that either I haven't found a use for, or I am unfamiliar with.  This week, my elusive "leftovers" have been beets, peaches, and blueberries.  The beets I will get to tomorrow.

But the peaches and blueberries I could take care of tonight.  A couple of days ago, I saw a recipe for a strawberry cake that looked absolutely dreamy.  I didn't have strawberries sitting around.  So I used the peaches and blueberries I had in the fridge.  I changed up the cake recipe a bit too - added some cinnamon and brown sugar.  I LOVE the combination of cinnamon, brown sugar, and peaches.  With this combination of fruit, I would add some cornmeal into the batter.  It would make it a bit heartier.  Cornmeal cakes make me think of southern food, and it makes me think of a blueberry corn muffin that I really like.  This also makes a delicious breakfast!

I baked this in a loaf pan because I don't have a round cake pan.  But I think my cake came out a little bit dry because of the loaf pan.  So I would definitely recommend baking in a pie plate or a round cake pan. This will also allow the fruit to spread out a little more, and I think more of the fruit will get softer because it isn't under a think layer of fruit.

Unfortunately, I didn't think of taking pictures and posting this until I put it in the oven.  But at least you get the recipe, and a picture of the final project, if nothing else.

Summer Fruit Cake
serves 8
adapted from smitten kitchen
1 1/2 c flour (can switch up to half for cornmeal)
1 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 t cinnamon
1 t vanilla
1/3 c + 2 T white sugar
1/3 c packed brown sugar
6 T room temperature butter, plus more for greasing pan
1/2 c milk
1 egg
1 lb summer fruit (I used a combination of peaches and blueberries, the original was all strawberries, you could use anything you want)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat together butter, brown sugar, and 1/3 c white sugar.  Add milk, egg, and vanilla, and stir well.  Add flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.  Mix until smooth.  Pour into a buttered 10-inch pie plate or cake pan.  Top with fruit.  Sprinkle with the remaining 2 T sugar.

Bake for 10 minutes.  Reduce heat to 325 degrees, and bake for another 50-60 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out without gooey cake on it.  You should expect to have some fruit on the tester.  Cut into wedges and serve topped with powdered sugar.

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