blueberry poppy seed butter cake

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To say that I’ve overdosed on blueberries would be an understatement. This weekend alone, I made a blueberry galette, a free-form pie and this luscious butter cake. I have to confess that this cake was my favorite among the three. It harkened back to lemon poppy seeded muffins and freshly-picked wild blueberries boiled hot, spilled onto the top of the muffin or spread as a layer of preserves on the insides. The cake is austere in its simplicity, and balanced in taste. This is the sort of dessert you rationalize as breakfast, so much so that I’ve decided to quarantine the CAKE, the PIE, and the GALETTE.

Sometimes it’s possible to have too many desserts in one day. {epic sigh}

INGREDIENTS: Adapted from Alice Water’s forthcoming cookbook, The Art of Simple Food II. Watch out for my forthcoming review on Medium.
For the cake
1 large egg, room temperature
2 lemons, zest grated (2 tsp)
2 cups blueberries, stems removed
2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour + 1 tbsp flour for mixing the berries
2 tbsp poppy seeds
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup creme fraiche, room temperature
8 tbsp (1 stick) of unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar

For the glaze
1 cup of powdered sugar (the original recipe called for a 1/3, but this didn’t work)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp milk (or just enough to reach a drizzling consistency)

DIRECTIONS
Pre-heat the oven to 350F. Butter a 9inch springform pan and dust with flour. Gently stir the blueberries, sugar and nutmeg in a medium bowl and set aside. In another medium bowl, stir the flour, poppy seeds, baking soda and salt until all the ingredients are well mixed.

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Add the egg and lemon zest and keep mixing. When well mixed, alternate adding the flour mixture and creme fraiche, starting and ending with 1/3 of the flour. Stir just until the flour is incorporated. Spread the batter into a prepared pan, spreading the mixture one inch up the sides of the pan to make a depression in the center. Stir the berries and add the tablespoon of flour. This will ensure that the berries don’t just sink to the bottom. Pour the blueberries into the center of the batter and bake for 45-50 minutes.

While the cake is baking, prepare the glaze. Drizzle it over the warm (not hot — let the cake cool for 3-5 minutes) cake. When cool, run a knife along the edge of the pan and lift out of the form.

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