Baking comes to your rescue when all else fails.
Summer 2020 calls for stretched imagination and sharp resourcefulness to overcome its exceptional nature.
Trips are canceled, parks are shut down, and kids’ activities are on hold. The lack of days’ structure after distance learning came to an end, made parents’ duty all the more daunting and taxing.
Inevitably, parents (me included) have to figure a balanced and engaging summer schedule that doesn’t revolve around screen time.
Getting the kids involved in the kitchen to bake and cook means plenty of extra cleaning and a stack of additional dishes to wash. But you know what?! It is worth it. It definitely is!
Baking is science, craft, and math combined in one session. Nothing dents kids’ memories rather than food time, either making or consuming it. I believe we all relate to that.
Challenges and projects are one way to create engagement during this long summer. And my challenge this summer is to bake a new fruit cake every week.
We peruse blogs and cookbooks looking for ideas and we are always surprised by how many more recipes we still want to try and savor.
Somehow, I am thrilled that I finally got to bake the cakes that have been on my to-do list for longer than I wished. There is always a silver lining to contemplate in trying times.
For last week’s challenge, we picked this lemon-Yogurt-Blueberry cake. It is adapted from the wonderfully insightful blog Sally’s Baking Addiction.
This full-fledged summer cake is pleasantly moist, speckled with refreshing zest and studded with juicy blueberries. It makes the perfect treat for dessert or tea time.
The original recipe is so accurately written, yet I slightly changed it. I swapped in icing sugar for granulated sugar as it lends a smoother texture, halved the amount of sugar in the cake, and added a raspberry sauce with a splash of rosewater to serve next to the cake.
I hope you will enjoy this refreshing cake as much as I did. It didn’t last long in our fridge. It pleased everyone in the family including those who have a resigned sweet tooth.
I would be thrilled if you bake this cake with your loved ones and enjoy the process the way we did. And it will mean the world to me if you leave your feedback, like, and/or share.
Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction
Serves 6-8 people
For the cake
- 3 cups cake flour (see notes for DYI cake flour)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup icing or confectioner sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 cups frozen blueberries, fresh is a possibility
For the Lemon Icing
- 1/2 cup of icing sugar
- 2 tablespoons of lemon
- 1 tablespoon of lemon zest
- a hint of food yellow coloring (optional)
For the Raspberry Sauce
- 1 cup of raspberry
- 1 cup of water
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of rosewater
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Prepare the Bundt. Generously grease a bundt mold with butter or nonstick spray.
- Make the cake batter. Sift together over a mixing bowl the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside. Whisk the yogurt and lemon juice together in a medium bowl. Set aside. Add to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, the butter, sugar, and lemon zest. The lemon zest will release its citrus aromas and zesty flavor in this creamy mixture. Whisk together on high speed until its pale, fluffy, and creamy. Add the eggs one by one and keep running the mixer at medium speed, until all eggs are well incorporated. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture. Pour the yogurt, and mix everything using a rubber spatula. Avoid using the mixer at this point, as over mixing the cake batter will damage the cake’s texture and taste.
- Bake the cake. Transfer the batter using a spoon to the oiled or buttered bundt. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center emerges crumb-free.
- Unmold the cake. Remove cake from the oven and allow to cool for 1 hour inside the pan. Then invert the cooled cake onto a wire rack or serving dish. Place the cake in the fridge for 30 min before applying the glaze.
- Make the glaze: Whisk the glaze ingredients together. Control the thickness by adding more icing sugar or thin it out by adding more lemon juice. Add a drop of food coloring to enhance the yellow color. Drizzle on top of cooled cake.
- Make the raspberry sauce. Bring a cup of raspberry with 1/2 cup of water, 2 tablespoons of sugar to light simmering, turn off the heat when the mixture thickens, and add a splash of rosewater. Pour the sauce over a fine-mesh sieve to discard the seeds. When it cools, keep it in the fridge until you serve it with the cake.
- Decorate and Serve the cake. Decorate with lemon slices, fresh or frozen red fruits, and lemon icing and serve it cold or at room temperature accompanied by the raspberry sauce.
- If you don’t have cake flour available, here is an easy DYI. Measure and level three cups of flour. with a measuring tablespoon, remove two tablespoons from each cup and swape in three tablespoons of cornflour. Sift the flour and cornflour three times. It is as simple as that!
- Before you start making the batter. Bring all your ingredients to room temperature.