Mmmm… cake. I was very much on a baking kick a couple weeks ago, the result being that we gain weight and the blog gains a few recipes. When I went to our local market one Saturday, as soon as I laid my eyes on these fat, glossy, juicy blackberries, I knew they’d end up in a cake. Of course, then Blai asked if they were the same berry that we ate off a wild bush on a recent bicycle ride. Yes, doh! I could’ve just ridden up there and picked some wild blackberries; if you have access to a wild bush, pick them there!
Coffee cake was what I had in mind – and no, there’s no coffee in it; instead it’s a snack cake meant to be eaten while having coffee. Confused? Yes, why can’t it just be called cake?! Or snack cake? Quite often, they have a crumbly topping, as mine did, so why not just… crumble cake? The original recipe I based my cake on made use of sour cherries and I reckon any tart berry would be a good substitute. I reduced the sugar in the original recipe as we tend to find a lot of North American recipes to be too sweet and I thought the sweetness level what resulted was just right.
I love fruit in cakes: the sweet-tartness of the berries burst through the butteriness of the tender cake and the crumbly shortbread-like topping, creating an incredibly moreish snack cake. Heck, late the next evening, we ate over half of the cake for dinner, with Larb Pretz on the side.
For the topping
50g unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup plain flour
1/4 cup caster or granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
For the cake
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
50g unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk
1 punnet of blackberries
Preheat your oven to 180 Celsius. Butter and flour an 8-9 inch square baking pan (or equivalent area pan).
Mix the topping together. In a bowl, mix together the flour, sugars, salt and cinnamon. Drizzle in the melted butter and stir together until mixed together and lumpy. Set aside.
Now mix the main cake batter together. Mix together the flour, salt and baking powder and set aside. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing until smooth. Add the vanilla and stir in. Add half the flour mixture, stir until just combined, add the milk, stir again, add the rest of the flour and stir until just combined again. Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Dot the batter with the blackberries and then sprinkle the topping evenly over it all.
Bake in the preheated oven until a skewer comes out clean when poked in the centre of the cake – this should take about 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool a bit and serve.