Friday, January 7, 2011

Blueberry-Lavender Crumb Cake

This recipe comes from a cookbook I bought at a thrift store in Mercer Island, WA. As soon as I saw the title of this book:  Recipes from an American Herb Garden my hand went into cat-like reflex mode, snatching this up as the next owner. Lavender grows all over Oregon and I recently picked up a zip lock bag of culinary lavender from Sundance Lavender Farm at the Portland State farmers market. This was my first time cooking with lavender - and I must say, this cake turned out magnificently! The perfumed, sweet flavor of the blueberry and lavender is delightful. If you like lavender or perfume-y flavors, you absolutely must try this recipe out. I will be making it many times over in the future, especially when my Significant (m)Other visits as lavender is her all time favorite flavor. I had this cake for breakfast, although it would be a crazy-delicious dessert with whipped cream and or vanilla ice cream. 

Blueberry-Lavender Crumb Cake
(Adapted from Recipes from an American Herb Garden by Maggie Oster)
  • 4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups AP or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups fresh or thawed frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 cup blanches sliced almonds
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh or dried lavender flowers
For the topping
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons AP or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease and lightly flour a 9-inch square baking pan. To make the cake, cream the butter, then gradually add the honey and beat until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and beat well, then mix in the milk. In another bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt, then add to the creamed mixture and blend well. Fold in the blueberries, almonds and lavender. Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Combine the topping ingredients until crumbly, then sprinkle evenly on top of the cake batter. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 40 or 45 minutes. Serve the cake warm with ice cream, if desired. 


Chow and Chatter said...

wow what a cool cake love the idea of adding lavender

elra said...

Sounds really fragrant and delicious ! Got to go to TJ's to buy that frozen blueberry.

Kim V. said...

This just looks delicious!

Ivy said...

Fresh lavender? Wow, very interesting. I only know dried lavender. Is there any similarity to the aroma and taste?

tasteofbeirut said...

this is a perfect cake for me: I still have pounds of lavender brought back from our mountain house in Lebanon; I have stuffed pillows with it but still have more; so this is wonderful and the addition of honey and fruit, excellent.

Helen said...

Sounds divine! This cake looks moist and dense and I can only imagine the aroma of lavender emanating from it. This cake would pair nicely with my lavender tea. Oh, yes, it's really good stuff!

Anna A. said...

Chow and Chatter - Thanks, I hope you make it. It's really delicious.

Elra - I get mine from TJ's too!

Kim - Hey Kim :) Thanks for stopping by.

Ivy - I used dried lavender, and now you got me curious about the fresh stuff.

tasteofbeirut - Pounds of lavender?! Send some my way! But it's true, a little goes a long way.

Helen - Oooo lavender tea sounds amazing. The cake was super moist - I think the batter - fruit combo ratio must be spot on so you could mix and match berries and flavos using this batter.

Ivy said...

Oooh, I thought you mentioned fresh lavender. Do you think you can get some fresh one? That would be a great experiment to try.
Thanks for the love. Good luck with the draw.

Mary said...

Lavender, used in small quantities, is such a wonderful addition to baked goods. Your cake sounds spot on and demands to be tried. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

Lindsay said...

I have never cooked with lavender before but am intrigued. I wonder where i would find it this time of year??

mangocheeks said...

Oh I don't blame you. If I saw the book, my hand would have snatched it too :)

I've been cooking with lavender quite a lot recently, so this new way of using it is so appealing. Thank you.

Peter G @ Souvlaki For The Soul said...

I must confess I have never really cooked with lavender or played with it in any kitchen experiments. Love the caking...your baking is tops Anna!

Anna A. said...

Ivy - There are lavender farms all over here so I'm sure I can round some up!

Mary - I was almost tempted to use more but didn't want to end up with a satchel in my mouth. ;)

Lindsay - You could get some online, no doubts.

Mangocheeks - I hope you post some of the stuff you're whipping up!

Peter - Ahh shucks, thanks :)

Mary said...

Anna, when the farm stands are open I buy my lamb at the Saturday Market here in Eugene. At this time of year I use the lamb from Costco (which is excellent). I hope the Costco in your area has the same standards as ours and that my answer helps. We are coming up on spring lamb season and there should be an abundant supply throughout the PNW. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Anna A. said...

Mary - Thanks for the information! I will scour my Costco for lamb.

KVH said...

Looks delicious!

Anna A. said...

KVH - :-) You give me an excuse to make it again.