Apple Blackberry Cake
August 24, 2011
Summer is not complete without a morning spent picking blackberries. Last weekend, under the pressure of a fall-like chill in the air and the craziness of back to school time, the kids and I pushed out for a ramble along the creek. We brought the wagon, a gazillion containers, and a baby doll or two. We dressed in our jeans and forced socks and closed shoes onto our spoiled summer feet. We were ready for a real berry picking session. What we found however is that like all other summer fruits (tomatoes especially!) everything is super late this year.
Not about to let a little thing like red under-ripe blackberries get us down, we assigned ourselves roles for our Blackberry Team. I picked the berries, my little man dumped the small containers into the bigger ones, and my little lady dragged the wagon up and down the trail laughing hysterically. After an hour of hard work (and just a few scrapes), we cruised home with a half-gallon of berries. Just enough for a few smoothies and Apple Blackberry Cake. While we suffer a shortage of ripe blackberries, we have boxes and boxes of Gravenstein apples from my parents’ trees.
Apple Blackberry Cake is a treat to make each late summer or fall. Though it is simple to prepare, somehow the cake has the ability to pass as both an elegant special dessert and a casual weeknight treat. This time it even disguised itself as a birthday cake. The apples are peeled and sliced and then pressed into a basic butter and brown sugar batter. The blackberries scatter across the top lending both a colorful burst and a tart contrast to the apples. The sugar and cinnamon sprinkled over the top help to form a nice sweet crunchy topping. This cake is well matched with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. I would not mind eating a slice for breakfast either with a nice cup of coffee.
Apple Blackberry Cake
makes one 9-inch cake
adapted from Martha Stewart Living
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the pan
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup milk (I used low fat)
2 large eggs
1 1/2 pounds apples (I used Gravensteins, McIntosh or Golden Delicious are also good bets)
1 cup blackberries
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for serving
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and dust it with sugar.
Peel and core apples. Cut into 8 wedges.
Place dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Whisk to combine.
Whisk together melted butter, 3/4 cup brown sugar, milk, and eggs in a different bowl. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture. Stir until just combined.
Spread batter into the prepared pan. Arrange apple wedges on the batter starting on the outside and working your way in. Evenly dot the top with blackberries. Gently press the fruit down into the batter.
Make the topping by stirring together the cinnamon and brown sugar. Sprinkle this mixture over the top of the cake. Cut 2 tablespoons of butter into small pieces and scatter them over the top.
Bake the cake for 50-55 minutes, until the top is brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
Here is a printer-friendly version of the recipe:Apple Blackberry Cake
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