Friday, May 22, 2009

Life is Just a Bowl Cherries

Last night's mission was to find something to do with all the fruit we have in our house. I decided to tackle the bag of cherries. Inspired by Smitten Kitchen (who was inspired by Gourmet's June issue), I made a buttermilk cherry cake. It was a very simple recipe - a good cake to make on a Thursday night. Smitten Kitchen made it with raspberries, but I thought the cherries would work just as well. I started by pitting about 2 cups of cherries. A cherry pitter is key for this process. They're not very pricey and are so easy to use. They work for olives as well, but don't do as well on the big ones.

I mixed up the batter, flavored with vanilla and a bit more lemon zest than the recipe called for. Then poured it into a buttered and floured cake pan and artfully arranged the cherries.

Which didn't really matter because the cherries disappeared in the baking process!

The cake was delicious and so easy. You could put just about any fruit or flavorings in it and it would be delicious. Very moist and soft.

Cherry Buttermilk Cake
inspired by Smitten Kitchen (inspired by Gourmet June 2009)

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup plus 1 1/2 Tbs sugar, divided
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest (optional)
1 large egg
1/2 cup well-shaken buttermilk
2 cups pitted fresh cherries

  • Preheat oven to 400°F with rack in middle. Butter and flour a 9-inch round cake pan.
  • Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside. 
  • In a larger bowl, beat butter and 2/3 cup sugar with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about two minutes, then beat in vanilla and zest, if using. 
  • Add egg and beat well.
  • At low speed, mix in flour mixture in three batches, alternating with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour, and mixing until just combined.
  • Spoon batter into cake pan, smoothing top. 
  • Arrange cherries evenly over top and sprinkle with remaining 1 1/2 Tbs sugar.
  • Bake until cake is golden and a wooden pick inserted into center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack and cool to warm, 10 to 15 minutes more. Invert onto a plate.
For dinner last night, I made a pretty simple meal after I was finished baking. I had about 2 cups of roasted butternut squash pieces in the fridge, which I pureed in the food processor with milk, wine, and herbs de provence. I sauteed some a asparagus in a pan with EVOO and garlic, then added the pureed squash to heat it up. I added cooked linguine to the pan, stirred in some of the cooking water to thin the sauce, and tossed in about 1/2 cup chopped mozzarella.


Between the squash and the pasta, it was definitely a stick to your ribs meal.

Derek appreciated it after the long bike ride he went on yesterday. We certainly didn't need dessert after this - but we had it anyway.

Cherry Pie à la mode!

No comments:

Post a Comment