Monday, May 16, 2011

Blackberry Citrus Cake

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I had a few cups of blackberries left over from the awesome $1.00 sale at Meijer a week ago. I wanted to be uber creative with them, and since I had already made Blackberry Lemon Muffins, I decided cake sounded outstanding. It was the eve of Mother's Day so rather than gorging ourselves on cake, we opted to share half of ours with the Pastor's wife and her family. They were thrilled!

This recipe has a few steps to it, but they are all simple--you can handle it, I promise! Just be sure to read all the way through the instructions before beginning so you have a grasp of what's to come. (I recommend that tip for any recipe!)

check out those beautiful berries!
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I adapted this recipe from Annie's Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes. I swapped in blackberries (slicing the larger ones) for the blueberries, orange zest for lemon zest, and a cake pan for the muffin tins. I fell in love with the beautifully colored bottom of the cake and chose to frost the top only--to allow the blackberries to peak through. Dense, rich, and insanely delicious, I highly recommend you try this recipe next time berries are on sale in your neck of the woods!

Blackberry Citrus Cupcakes
recipe adapted from annies-eats.com
Makes: 1 one-layer 10 inch cake

Ingredients
For the cupcakes
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour, divided
3/4 cup cake flour*
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
8 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
Zest of  1/2 orange
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. milk, at room temperature
1 to 1/2 cup fresh blackberries (gently cut the larger ones in half)

For the frosting
8 oz cream cheese
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Zest of 1/2 large orange

Additional fresh blackberries, for garnish

Directions
*for a cake flour substitute: sift together 3/4 cup all purpose flour with 2 Tbsp corn starch. This makes 1 cup cake flour. Use only 3/4 cup for this recipe!

Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  

Grease the bottom and sides of a 10 inch round cake pan and dust with flour.  In a medium bowl, combine the ¾ cup all-purpose flour, the cake flour, baking powder and salt; whisk together and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter, sugar and lemon zest.  Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, blending well after each addition.  Beat in the vanilla and lemon juice.  With the mixer on low speed, mix in half of the dry ingredients just until incorporated.  Blend in the milk.  Mix in the remaining dry ingredients, beating just until incorporated.

In a small bowl, toss the blueberries with the remaining 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour.  Using a spatula gently fold the berries into the cake batter.  Divide the batter evenly between the prepared liners, filling each about ¾ full.  Bake 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let cool in the pans 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer.  Beat on medium-high speed until well combined and smooth, about 2-3 minutes.  Mix in the lemon juice and lemon zest.  Gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until totally incorporated, increase the speed and then beat until smooth.  Frost cooled cupcakes as desired. (I used a large, unlabeled star tip to frost these cupcakes.) Garnish with fresh blueberries.

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