Jul 21

My bookcase is lined more with cookbooks than anything else, yet still I can’t resist adding another new release to its shelves if its topic is contemporary and inspired. But I do have my collection of quirky, old favorites that I come back to every year because they hold a recipe that is tried and true, superlative and remindful of times past.

In the advent of blueberry season I begin to think about these moist, citrusy little cakes that are speckled throughout with juicy pockets of berry. The recipe comes from an old copy of Cooking Light magazine that I purchased well before I attended culinary school, or even thought of becoming a professional chef. Judging by the ingredient content, I don’t believe the recipe to be either light or necessarily nutritious, but what it does produce is a cake that is unparalleled in flavor and texture.

In an effort to “lighten” the batter, the editors of Cooking Light replaced the usual whopping quantity of butter in a pound cake with part cream cheese and part lemon yogurt. This gives the cake an incredibly fluffy and rich crumb which is further enhanced by the flavors of blueberry and citrus, and perfected with a thin, sugary coat of lemon icing over top. While the original recipe calls for baking the entire batter in a bundt mold, I recently opted instead for a muffin pan, turning them into individual cakes. They easily double for muffins (but for a healthier recipe look here) and are perfect midsummer with a cold glass of iced tea.

Blueberry Pound Cake Recipe:

from The Complete Cooking Light Cookbook, 2000

2 C sugar

1/3 C butter, softened

1/2 C cream cheese, softened

3 large eggs

1 large egg white

2 tsp vanilla

3 C all purpose flour

2 C fresh or frozen blueberries

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 8 oz carton lemon yogurt

1/2 C powdered sugar

4 tsp lemon juice

Method: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 standard muffin trays and set aside. Beat sugar, butter and cream cheese at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add eggs and egg white, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Toss blueberries with 2 Tbsp of flour and set aside. Combining remaining flour with baking soda, powder and salt then set aside. Add flour to sugar mixture alternating with yogurt, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Fold in berries. Divide batter evenly among the muffin tins then bake for about 25 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool for about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, combine powdered sugar and lemon juice together with the whisk. Drizzle a small spoonful on top of each cake.

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