Happy New Year! You know what that means: winter is coming!! In SF, that mostly means rain. In Nigeria, where I just was, that means Harmattan, which is when Saharan sand blows towards sub-Saharan Africa, causing reduced visibility and “cold” weather (i.e. 70 degrees).
Back when I was in Boston, winter meant endless snow. Which I hated. The one part of winter I did look forward to, though, was citrus season.
If you didn’t already know, citrus fruits like blood oranges, meyer lemons, and cara cara oranges begin to come into season in December, just as the first frosts come in. Even throughout the worst winters in Boston, I was always able to find refuge in the deep reds, bright pinks, and bright yellows of the various citruses that I bought at Trader Joe’s.
One cake I often make during citrus season is this lemon blueberry cake. This cake looks a lot like a pound cake, but it is crazy moist and speckled with cooked blueberry deliciousness. This year, I made it for my sister, who used it to break her 30-day-fast from sweets.
Since it was such a special occasion, I took extra care, using wild blueberries to ensure they wouldn’t all fall to the bottom of the cake, and rinsing/drying them thoroughly the day before to prevent them from turning the batter blue.
Clearly, it was all worth it.
Most importantly, I only gave her part of the cake to take with her. That meant I could have a slice for dessert after dinner…and after lunch…and even after breakfast, if I’m being really honest.
Lemon blueberry yogurt cake
from Smitten Kitchen
1 1/2 cups + 1 tbsp flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 cup plain yogurt
1 cup + 1 tbsp sugar
3 large eggs
2 tsp grated lemon zest
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups blueberries
1/3 cup (meyer or regular) lemon juice
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a loaf pan. Whisk together 1 1/2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Additionally, mix together yogurt, 1 cup sugar, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla, and oil in a larger bowl. Then, slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet until just mixed. Toss the blueberries with the remaining tablespoon of flour, and then fold them gently into the cake batter. Pour batter into loaf pan and bake for 50 or more minutes, or until done. Quickly, cook the lemon juice and 1 tbsp sugar until the sugar dissolves and the syrup is clear. After the cake has cooled for 10 minutes, take it out of the pan and cover it with the lemon-sugar mixture. Let the cake cool, and the juice soak in.