I have never been in berry heaven as I am here in Vancouver. Of course, we have berries available in Australia, but they barely stand up to the sweet juicy flavour and large size that we are enjoying here. The price of berries back home are also double or even triple what they cost here too which is a real eye opener.
I would almost ration them out at home on our breakfast cereal or as a snack and fresh raspberries were certainly a big treat for special occasions as they were at the top of the list for most expensive.
Here in our fridge right now there are abundant bowls of blueberries, raspberries filling our shelves and I faced with the tough decision of whether to bake, create or freeze? When a couple of kilograms of berries cost $10, we just can’t eat them fast enough!
I have been busy in the kitchen trying out recipes that have been inspired from some classics. The first I have baked is a British favourite with not much too it but berries, almonds, eggs, flour and sugar. I have adapted the recipe slightly from a BBC Food recipe I found for a Raspberry bakewell cake.
Any berries would work, Taeberries, blackberries, mulberries etc. If you like more of a moist gooey type cake, then the time specified in the method will achieve this result. If you like your cake a little more fluffy and light, then you need to bake at a slightly higher temperature at the beginning for 15 minutes (approx 200 C / 400 F) and substitute 50gm almond meal for 50gm more self raising flour.
You can easily replace the butter with coconut oil and flour with an alternative like a gluten-free flour for specific dietary options.
Berry bakewell cake
100gm ground almonds/almond meal
140gm butter, softened
140gm caster sugar / berry sugar
180gm self-raising flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
250gm raspberries and blueberries (can use fresh or frozen)
2 Tablespoons flaked almonds
AS AN ALTERNATIVE DECORATION TO SPRINKLING FLAKED ALMONDS ON TOP…
140gm icing sugar
1 Tablespoon Amaretto
2-3 Tablespoons water
Roasted coconut flakes
1. Heat oven to 180C / 355F and grease and line a deep 20cm loose bottomed cake tin.
2. In a food processor, add the ground almonds, butter, sugar, flour, eggs and vanilla extract until well combined.
3. Spread half the mix over the cake tin and smooth over the top with a spatula or your fingers. Scatter the blueberries and raspberries over, then dollop the remaining cake mixture on top and roughly spread till covered.
4. Either scatter with almonds and bake for 55 minutes until golden. Cool for 30 mins in the tin and then remove from the tin and dust with icing sugar.
5. Bake first for 50mins to an hour and follow icing directions below…
1. Mix the two tablespoons of water and Amaretto with the icing sugar until combined. Keep adding water until the icing is thick but not too runny. Drizzle over the top of the cake and scatter roasted coconut flakes over the top.
It’s lovely served with vanilla ice-cream or coconut sorbet. Enjoy!