Blueberry Lemon Bundt Cake

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

With the onset of heat early in the summer, we enjoyed a bumper crop of berries this year. I spent many afternoons picking pounds of blueberries for my freezer for those cold, dark days of winter. 

I thought I'd enjoy the last of this season's blueberries with an easy bundt cake. Although I used fresh berries for this recipe, frozen can be easily substituted. 

Blueberry Lemon Bundt Cake adapted from Martha Stewart Cakes

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries 
2 tbsp grated lemon zest

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside. In another mixing bowl, whisk the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time until fully combined. Add the vanilla. Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with two additions of the sour cream. 

In a small bowl, combine the blueberries with a tablespoon of flour. This prevents the berries from sinking to the bottom of your cake. Add in the zest and mix. Fold gently into the batter. 

Generously coat a bundt pan with non-stick pan and spread the batter evenly in the pan. Bake on the bottom rack of the oven for 60-70 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. 

Cool in the pan for 20 minutes and invert onto a rack to cool completely. Dust with icing sugar before serving. 

Cherry Croissant Pudding

Sunday, August 16, 2015

cherry croissant pudding

As I was perusing the bevy of goods at the White Rock Farmer's market, I noticed this was the last day for cherries. I quickly scooped up a bag and set to work on making this unique dessert.

The combination of croissants soaked with a creamy custard and topped with cherries might even allow this not-too-sweet dessert to pass as breakfast!

Cherry Croissant Pudding adapted from Paul Hollywood's Pies and Puds

1 1/4 cups whipping cream
1 1/4 whole milk
3/4 cup sugar
4 large egg yolks
6 medium or 4 large croissants
6-7 tbsp cherry jam
1/2 cup of fresh cherries

Grease an overproof dish. Pour both the cream and milk into the saucepan and heat until just before boiling. remove from the heat. Stir together the sugar and egg yolks and and pour in the hot milk mixture. Blend and set aside. 

Meanwhile, halve each croissant and spread with the cherry jam and place in the dish. Scatter on the cherries and pour over the custard. Allow the dish to sit for 30 minutes so that the croissants can soak up the custard. Preheat your oven to 325 F and pop into the oven for 40-45 minutes or until the custard has set. Cover with foil if the croissants are browning too quickly. Serve when hot. 

Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

A light mousse can be a refreshing dessert on a warm summer's day. As this is not a labour intensive recipe -- it has 4 ingredients -- it only took me about 10 minutes to prepare.

Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse adapted from Canadian Living

1/2 cup chocolate hazelnut spread (I used Nutella)
1 tbsp unsalted butter
3/4 cup whipping cream
3 tbsp water

In a heatproof bowl placed over a pot of simmering water, melt the spread and water together until smooth. Stir in the butter. Set aside, but keep warm.

Meanwhile in a separate bowl, whip the cream and gently fold in one-third of the chocolate mixture. Fold in remaining cream. Spoon into serving glasses, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours in order to set the mousse fully. 

Top with chocolate shavings or hazelnuts. 

Sweet Orange Cake (Vegan)

Friday, August 7, 2015

I wasn't in the mood to laboriously blend butter and sugar together so I opted for an oil based cake instead. The result was a very moist cake that was whipped up in no time! Perfect for a picnic or camping as no icing is required.

Sweet Orange Cake adapted from Joy of Cooking

1.5 cups of all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar (decrease by 2 tablespoons for a less sweet cake)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup orange juice
1/3 vegetable oil
1 tbsp grated orange zest
1 tbsp white or cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease one 8 x 8 cake pan and line with parchment paper. Whisk together the flour, sugar, soda and salt and add in the rest of the ingredients. Stir until well blended. Tranfer batter into the pan and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let rest for 10 minutes and run a knife around the edge of the pan. Invert the cake and cool right side up. Garnish with a dusting of icing sugar.