Blueberry Cornmeal Cake: Blueberries = happiness; will this cake also = happiness? We’ll see.

Recipe: A cornmeal cake that uses ricotta cheese, among other things, to create a unique texture, topped off with fresh blueberries.

After perusing my Bon Appetit magazines from months past, I chose a Blueberry Cornmeal Cake for tomorrow’s “meeting”. The recipe was included in the magazine due to a request from a reader who frequents the Huckleberry Bakery & Cake in Santa Monica, CA, which makes such a cake. Now, brace yourself, because I’m about to go on another ohmygoshIlovethesefoods rant.

First, cornmeal. Who doesn’t love cornmeal, I ask you? I don’t really think of it as a spring/summer food – I definitely associate it with warm-from-the-oven cornbread, served with a hot bowl of chili/soup in the fall or winter. But it is such a delicious thing, I was happy to stumble on a recipe that used it with a summer fruit, in a dessert of all things! Which caused me to wonder – how is it possible that I have not used cornmeal in a dessert prior to this day… that seems wrong. I will certainly be on the lookout for such desserts in the future because it’s a flipping fantastic idea. (Anyone out there who wants to share one of these must-be gems, please do forward on your recipes!)

Second, blueberries. I feel like blueberries don’t get the recognition they deserve as one of the most amazing fruits out there – not only in terms of their frankly outstanding flavor, but hello antioxidants?? My love of the blueberry stems from two separate but chronologically close events. The first occurred when my family and I were visiting Nubble Lighthouse in York, ME during my high-school years. My paternal Grandparents’ ashes were both spread there after their passing, so it was a somber visit. But that didn’t stop us from visiting the small ice cream shack right by the lighthouse. Now, I’m a creature of habit and normally when I get ice cream I play it safe – vanilla, cookies and cream, etc. But fortunately, that day I decided to go a little crazy and try something new. Since we were in Maine, I chose their blueberry ice cream, and my life was never the same… Ok, that’s a little dramatic. But I have had dreams about this ice cream, it’s that good. (On a side note, my parents and I will be visiting that area this summer and I cannot express how excited I am about this – it’s been 10 years and that’s far too long.)

The second event occurred when I was lucky enough to spend a few weeks with my Uncle Steve and Aunt Ellen in New Hampshire to study for the SATs with said Uncle. I’m a terrible standardized-test taker, and my scores definitely did go up a bit after his intensive training. But what I remember most from that week was their huge garden, picking blueberries from their numerous bushes, and making blueberry coffeecake nearly every day. Combine that with them being very fun and interesting people, their amazing house – on a secluded lake in rural New Hampshire – …. yes, it was heaven.

So, to review, killer blueberry ice cream + numerous blueberry coffeecakes made with fresh-from-the-bush = how could I not love the blueberry?

Ok, now back to the cake. Given my whole cornmeal, blueberry love thing, I was really pretty excited to try out this recipe. Since the recipe called for a 10″ springform pan and I only have a 9″ springform pan, I held back on some of the batter and made mini muffins with the leftovers. Both the cake and the mini muffins are currently sitting out on my counter, cooling. The cake won’t be broken into until the meeting tomorrow afternoon, but I was curious and did test one of the mini muffins. At first taste – and recognizing that the texture and fullness of flavor may be completely different in the cake (there are WAY more blueberries in the cake than the mini muffins) – it kind of tasted like corn muffins with a little bit of blueberry – blah. I was expecting something a little more creamy and cakey, but alas. My initial thought was cream cheese layer in the middle. But, like I said, I need to wait until tomorrow afternoon before I make any final decisions. I’m also a little anxious about how done the outside of the cake looks – it took quite a while for the cake to cook all the way through, and the outside looks a little crisp… hmm… I am hoping with all big hope of hopes that the cake goes over well because I REALLY want this thing to rock my socks off! Fingers crossed for tomorrow!


May 31, 2010. Blueberries, Cake.

One Comment

  1. acct replied:

    Yes to the cream cheese idea! Cream cheese does make most things better. While I have been known to crave a good cornbread I still think you should pursue the whole lemon/blueberry combo we were talking about. I think you’ll find more creamy cakeness there. Looking forward to how the full-size version goes over. Enjoy!

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