I believe I was put on this earth to:
1. make people eat vegetables
3. rant about unimportant things while saying “REALLY?!” multiple times
I’m good at these things and they bring me joy.
I also think that there are some people in this world who were born to bake…I am not one of those people.
I like baking, I really do – but the thrill and urgency of cooking wins out on most days. I like the chopping, the stirring and the tasting of something being sautéed in a pan. I love starting out with chopped onions and garlic, seasoning and seasoning some more.
But really, I usually just don’t have the patience to bake something brilliant.
Lately though, something’s changed – baking has become a place of solace – a way of restoring a sense of order and control in my life. The process of measuring and mixing makes me slow down and be patient with myself. It’s like a lesson in treating myself right.
I love coffee cakes with a crumbly topping and a soft, fluffy base. I love sweetening baked goods with good local honey or maple syrup. I love little pockets of sweet and brightly colored berries all up in my cake’s business. If you love these things too – you should make some time for yourself and this cake. It’s going to be awesome!
Blueberry Coffee Cake
adapted form 101 Cookbooks
– 1 cup spelt flour
– 3 tablespoons rolled oats
– 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
– 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
– 1/3 cup good honey or maple syrup, room temperature
– 1 large egg, room temperature
– zest of 1/2 a lemon
– 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
– 1/4 cup buttermilk
– 1 1/3 cups blueberries, either fresh or frozen and thawed
– 1/2 cup spelt flour
– 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut 1/4-inch cubes
– 1/3 cup panela sugar (or brown sugar)
– 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Heat the oven to 350F/175C degrees. Butter your baking pan and line with parchment paper. (Note: the original recipe called for a loaf pan, but I went for a square baking pan – it’s up to you – just start checking you cake at the 45 minute mark.)
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside. In a separate large bowl beat the butter with an electric mixer or by hand – until light and fluffy. Drizzle in the honey or maple syrup and beat until well incorporated, scrape down the sides of the bowl a couple of times along the way.
Beat in the egg, lemon zest, and vanilla extract, scraping the sides again. Add half of the flour, stir just a bit, now add a splash of the buttermilk, stir again, but not too much. Add the rest of the flour and stir a bit, and now the rest of the buttermilk. Stir until everything barely comes together and then very gently fold in the blueberries. Scrape the batter evenly into the prepared pan and set aside.
To make the crumble topping, place the flour, butter, maple sugar and walnuts in a food processor and pulse 20-30 times or until the topping is a bit beyond sandy/crumbly. It should be moist-looking – on its way to being slightly doughy. Crumble it over the cake batter and pat in place with your fingertips.
Place the coffee cake in the oven and bake for 45-50 minutes or until the top is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool for five minutes and then remove it from the pan to cool on a rack.