blueberry cake with warm vanilla sauce

Posted on July 28, 2011. Filed under: Dessert | Tags: , , , , , |


My family is not unusual.  We like to eat.  Our celebrations, holidays and gatherings generally revolve around us in the kitchen, crowded around a tray of one delightful and unhealthy treat or another.  We are also lucky enough to have a family cottage on Lake Winnipesaukee in NH, where I spent a majority of my summer vacations and is still my favorite place in the world.  One of the best parts of the lake (besides swimming all day long) was that it always included visits with my dad’s parents, aka Mere and Pere.  Pere and I would go to the store in the morning, me picking out penny candy while he would get the morning paper while Mere would spend all day cooking in the kitchen, feeding us endlessly and never allowing for leftovers.  After a very long life filled with marriage, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, Mere passed away today.  She is loved deeply and will be missed.  She will live on in our memories and in the recipes she shared with all of us.  In her honor, I would like to share with you one of my family’s absolute favorite “Mere” recipes.

Blueberry cake in itself is simple but delicious.  The pièce de résistance is the the warm vanilla sauce.  That is the key, the magic, the money spot.  As a kid, I was very anti-vanilla sauce because as a kid, I made bad decisions.  I didn’t eat cheesecake because why would I want cheese in my dessert?  I gagged over seafood and preferred instead a diet of chicken tenders and mac & cheese.   So why would I want soggy cake?!  The adults were always there to scoop up the extra sauce for their own cake, ensuring each slice was sitting in a pool of sauce so there was enough for every bite.

So please, please make this recipe and enjoy!  It’s a great summer dessert, a classic with a twist.  And since it has fruit in it…you can eat it for breakfast too…right?

Blueberry Cake:

1/4 cup soft butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
1 quart blueberries

Preheat your oven to 325F and grease a 9x 9 pan.  I used an 8×8 pan and added about 5 minutes to the cook time and all was well with the world.

Cream together the butter and sugar until light then beat in the egg.  Combine milk and vanilla in a separate bowl or measuring cup and set aside.  Sift the flour and baking powder together.  Alternate adding half of the dry mixture, the milk, then the rest of the dry into the butter, sugar and egg mixture and mix until combine.

Sprinkle the blueberries with a tablespoon of flour (I used the bowl I had sifted the flour and baking powder into) then gently fold into batter.  The batter will be very thick and somewhat hard to “fold” without bursting the blueberries but just do your best effort.  Also, I used a pint instead of a quart of berries based on a recommendation from my mom.  I would not be against upping the blueberry quantities to the full quart next time.  Fresh are always better than frozen and Maine berries are my favorite but are impossible to get in DC.  Spread the batter in the greased pan.  Bake 1 hour or until lightly brown on top and springs back when gently touched.  As previously mentioned, I did 65 minutes of baking with the smaller pan – Use the “clean toothpick” test if needed.

Warm Vanilla Sauce:

1 cup sugar
2 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp salt
3 cups water
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp vanilla

Mix the sugar, cornstarch and salt in a saucepan.  Stir in the water and heat over medium heat until it comes to a boil and is thick.  Boil the sauce for a few (2-3) minutes.  Take off the heat and stir in the butter and vanilla.

Serve warm sauce spooned generously over each serving of cake.  This works best in a bowl.  Then commence devouring with your own family!

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4 Responses to “blueberry cake with warm vanilla sauce”

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What a nice tribute Lindsey! We haven’t had that cake in a while, so its time again…thanks so much. It was so nice to read your Blueberry Blog this morning! I only knew Mere for 7 years, but what a wonderful lady…I thought of her as my grandmother too in a way…she will be missed by all. Cheers to Mere!

I’m drooling looking at the picture of the finished product! Looks like I will be baking this weekend…Thanks for the tribute to a lovely lady.

What a perfect way to celebrate your grandmother’s life! I can’t wait to try this recipe………can’t get enough blueberries this time of the year!

I had a close family friend that used to make this back in NY…I love this stuff and am so glad to find the recipe! Brings back fond childhood memories.


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