Jordana, the violinist and singer of the folk band that I play in, Harpeth Rising, turns 26 today! Ilove baking birthday cakes for my friends when I get the chance, and I wanted to make something for her evocative of Spring, even though it was snowing outside. [Snow. Seriously?!]
|Ingredients for the blackberry sauce.|
This cake is based off of the French yogurt cake, which is a classic cake that can be made with pantry ingredients. It's simplicity lends itself to an infinite variety of added flavors. Deb from Smitten Kitchen had the idea to infuse it with lime and blackberry, and as soon as I saw it I knew that I had to make it. You can substitue any citrus, and any fruit, but I love the tang and combination of those two flavors, and was in love. I also saw a wild combination on my google search- a poppy seed grapefruit cake. Don't be surprised if I make that soon. I can't even fathom what that would taste like, but I'm inextricably drawn to it. Plus it looks pretty. Maybe my taste buds are cross-wired (which would explain my love of smoked oysters, nomm).
CAKES WITH, AND WITHOUT MAKEUP!
adapted slightly from Smitten Kitchen
1 Cup Greek yogurt (either 2% or full fat, I would avoid fat free)
1/3 Cup grapeseed oil (use any neutral oil you have)
1 Cup sugar
zest of one lime
1/4 Cup lime juice
2 eggs at room temperature
1 2/3 Cups sprouted grain whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
12 ounces fresh blackberries
(frozen works, just use half as much water)
1/4 cup water
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon fresh lime juice
Whipped coconut cream:
One can of full-fat coconut milk
Splash of vanilla extract
A few teaspoons of sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease the sides and bottom of a 9-inch cake pan, or springform pan. If you are not using a springform pan, you can line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper to ensure that it releases easily afterwards.
Mix the yogurt, oil, sugar, lime zest and juice in a large bowl. One by one, add the eggs, carefully stirring after each one. Sift the flour, baking powder, bakign soda, and salt together over the bowl, and stir lightly until just combined. Don't overmix!
Pour into the prepared cake pan, and put in the middle rack of your oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the cake is a light golden brown color and an inserted knife comes out clean.
Place pan on a cooling rack for ten minutes, slide a butter knife around the sides and edges, and invert onto the cooling rack to finish cooling. You can eat it warm, or at room temperature. At this point you can wrap the cake in plastic wrap for up to three days (I wrapped it for one day). You can also make the sauce and coconut whip ahead, and pop into the fridge until you need it.
Combine blackberries, lime juice, and sugar in food process or blender. Finely puree, and then strain the seeds out. Set aside!
Whipped coconut cream:
Take a can of full-fat coconut milk, and place in the refrigerator for at least a few hours (preferably overnight). Open the can, and scoop out the thick coconut cream which will be at the top of the can. Stop as soon as you see the coconut water at the bottom of the can. Set aside the coconut water (you can drink it as is, or put it in a smoothie), and whip the coconut solids for five minutes, adding a teeny spash of vanilla extract and sugar. You can put a metal bowl in the freezer for 5-10 minutes to help the coconut cream stay chilled and whip up better. I had a little bit of the coconut water in the whip, and it prevented it from whipping up into soft peaks.
Place the cake on the cooling rack, with a tray or large plate underneath. Carefully pour the blackberry sauce over the middle of the cake. It should just reach the edge of the cake. Spoon the coconut whip over in dollops, which will push the blackberry sauce over the sides, completely enrobing it in a beautiful deep purple sheen. I was hoping for fluffy mounds of coconut whip, but I had a little bit of coconut water in it and it didn't fluff in the way I wanted it to. It kind of went "sploooooch", and looked like a hurricane over a blackberry ocean, but you know what- it's ok. That's what I told myself, at least. Decorate with blackberries, mint leaves, however you want! This all being said, you could dust the cake with powdered sugar and serve the sauce over the cut slices, or any which way you wish.