Occasionally on this here blog I write thinly-veiled diatribes about something or another happening in my life squeezed into whatever recipe I’ve made that week. You know. Every once in a while. It’s not like I regularly use this space as catharsis-disguised-as-describing-a-cake. That would be so crazy of me!!!!!
For example, this cake has nothing to do with the zipper of my jeans falling off of my jeans at the exact moment I walked past an ex, of course, of course!!!!, exposing my effing UNDERWEAR seriously this happened to me. This cake has nothing to do with me getting 3 parking tickets during my latest apartment move. This cake has absolutely zero to do with me never catching a break in my dating life, like, ever. Ever ever. This cake has nothing to do with me breaking 3 wine glasses after wrapping them in all of the bubble wrap that exists or has ever existed ever seriously HOW DID THOSE THINGS BREAK I AM COMPLETELY AT A LOSS HERE I’M NOT SURE WHAT ELSE I SHOULD BE DOING TO PROTECT THE WINE GLASSES OF MY LIFE! I AM NOT!!!!!
What this cake DOES have to do with is: being lovely. It’s mild and lovely and the blueberries are plump and wonderful and the topping is crispy and nutty and all of these things have absolutely ZERO to do with me having a piece of crumb topping in my hair for like half an hour and I KNOW people noticed and why would no one tell me that shit?
Well, I guess this cake does actually have a lot to do with that. But. You get my point, friend. Make this cake. Make it and have it with coffee, top it with some cream, eat it at night, eat it in the morning, and be happy your zipper is still on your jeans. BE SO HAPPY ABOUT THAT.
Blueberry Crumb Cake
from Baking from My Home to Yours
For the crumbs:
5 tbsp unsalted butter, room temp
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
For the cake:
1 pint (2 cups) blueberries (preferably fresh, or frozen, not thawed) [I didn’t have enough so I supplemented with some peaches. The peaches were fucking BLAND but they leant some moisture so it wasn’t all bad, friends.]
2 cups plus 1 tsps all-purpose flour
2 tsps baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
2/3 cup sugar
grated zest of 1/2 lemon or 1/4 orange
3/4 stick (6 tbsp) unsalted butter, room temp
2 large eggs, room temp
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 350F. Butter an 8″ square pan and put in on a baking sheet.
Put all the ingredients for the crumbs except the nuts in a food processor (i used my kitchenaid, although i suspect hands work equally well here) and pulse just until the mixture forms clumps and curds and holds together when pressed. Scrape the topping into a bowl, stir in the nuts and press a piece of plastic against the surface. Refrigerate until needed. (Covered well, the crumb mix can be refrigerated up to 3 days)
Using your fingertips, toss the blueberries and 2 tsps of the flour in a small just to coat the berries; set aside. Whisk together the remaining 2 cups flour, the baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Working in the bowl of a stand mixer or another large bowl, rub the sugar and zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and aromatic. Add the butter and, with the paddle or whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat the sugar with the butter at medium speed until light, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one by one, beating for about 1 minute after each addition, then beat in the vanilla extract. Don’t be concerned if the batter looks curdled–it will soon smooth out. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture and the buttermilk alternately, the flour in 3 parts and the buttermilk in 2 (beginning and ending with the dry ingredients). You will have a thick, creamy batter. With a rubber spatula, gently stir in the berries.
Scrape the batter into the buttered pan and smooth the top gently with the spatula. Pull the crumb mixture from the refrigerator and, with your fingertips, break it into pieces. There’s no need to try to get even pieces–these are crumbs, they’re supposed to be lumpy and bumpy and every shape and size. Scatter the crumbs over the batter, pressing them down ever so slightly.
Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, or until the crumbs are golden and a thin knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool just until it is warm or until it reaches room temperature.