Blueberry love

I’ve been obsessing over my blueberry plant ever since it started to ripen, very beautifully I might add. Blue begins to marble the skin and within a day or two the entire fruit turns from green to a dusty blue, then whole bunches turn blue then the whole tree.. it’s quite exciting watching it happening! My plant was heavy with ripe fruit a few days ago so I decided it was time to pick them and bake something. There wasn’t enough for pie or a crumble so a pound cake it was. There’s also some sliced rhubarb in it, since I had two stalks that needed to be used. Rhubarb and almond go hand-in-hand so in went some marzipan into the batter, and also some cream cheese.. I replaced a bit of the flour with ground almonds and this resulted in the cake falling after it was removed from the oven, but that’s ok- it was still delicious.

For a “regular” sized loaf pan:

170g sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
90g blueberries
1 stalk rhubarb, cut into 0.5-1cm chunks
170g self raising flour
20g ground almonds
160g butter
160g cream cheese
40g marzipan (I used Anthon Berg 60% Almond Marzipan)
50ml milk
2 eggs

1. Grease and line a loaf tin, preheat oven to 160°.

2. Cream butter, sugar and marzipan until light and fluffy. Add egg one at a time, then add the cream cheese, vanilla and milk.

3. Fold in the flour and ground almonds.

4. Fill the tin 1/2 full and scatter the blueberries and rhubarb chunks (save some for the top), then top with the rest of the batter and place some blueberries and rhubarb on top.

5. Bake for about 50 minutes to an hour, depending on your oven.

Victoria Sponge

This victoria sponge recipe is adapted from a Martha Stewart strawberry shortcake recipe, but since I spread some jam between the layers I thought a Victoria Sponge was a more befitting name. It’s no ordinary victoria sponge- instead of light and fluffy sponge or chiffon cakes for the cake layers, this one is a marzipan-cornmeal pound cake. It isn’t very heavy and dense though, it’s still pretty fluffy and the almond flavour is so addictive and pairs very well with the jam . Atop the slick of jam on the cake is a generous layer of mascarpone cream, a cool and neutral flavour to tame down the sweetness of the cake. I topped the cakes with the tiniest and cutest English strawberries- instant kitschy cute. Almost unbearably cute..

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