Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bon Appétit: Lemon and Blueberry Upside-Down Cake


This week my grocery store had a special on pints of blueberries. They looked pretty fresh, so I bought a package. It was only after I returned home that I realized I had no idea what to make them into, except that I didn't want the standard muffin.  And if you don't want a muffin, what do you do?  Make a cake.  The cake turns out deliciously moist and not too sweet, with the blueberries adding most of the sugar. It's delicious hot, with whipped cream, cold, or any other way you can think of to eat it..

Lemon and Blueberry Upside-Down Cake

¾ cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, divided use
1½ cups blueberries
¾ cup cake flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
4 ounces almond paste
½ cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons finely grated lemon peel
1 tablespoon lemon juice, fresh squeezed
3 large eggs, at room temperature

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a small saucepan, heat brown sugar and 1 stick of unsalted butter until butter melts and the sugar is incorporated. When mixture bubbles, pour into the bottom of a 9-inch round cake pan. Drop blueberries evenly over the top and press into the sugar mixture slightly.

Sift together cake flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, use a fork to break up the almond paste. Add the sugar, lemon peel, and lemon juice. Using the paddle attachment, mix on medium speed until almond paste is mostly broken down, and the mixture resembles crumbs. Add the remaining 1 stick of butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, still beating. When mixture is creamy and fully combined, add eggs, one at a time. Use a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl and ensure everything is combined.

Add flour mixture, and mix until just combined. Use the spatula to scrape the sides again and ensure the batter is uniform. Scoop the batter over the blueberry mixture in the pan, and then even off the top of the batter. Put the cake pan on a baking sheet, and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let the cake rest for approximately a minute before inverting onto a large plate. Wait 15-20 minutes before serving.

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