blackberry jam cake

one of the few really vivid memories i have of childhood is of getting all scratched up while picking blackberries at circle z ranch in grass valley, ca. my parents were the caretakers of my uncle's ranch in grass valley for most of my elementary school years, and we spent countless weekends staying in the log cabin there. there was a wide, shallow creek that cut through the property, lined with birch trees and flat pale stones perfect for skipping. the sun would predictably dapple through said trees, producing that golden, buttery light that flashback are made of. it was on the banks of this creek that the blackberry bushes grew and my brother, my cousin, and i would spend hours and hours sorting through the rough tangle to get a few handfuls of anemic berries. my whole childhood was a quest to get enough blackberries to bake a pie and despite many, many scrapes and many, many hours, this never happened.

so when i saw this blackberry jam cake on 101 cookbooks, i was hoping for a revelation. i've grown up enough to no longer crave the sticky sweetness of a traditional blackberry pie, but not really enough to resist a caramel-like glaze on a dense, blackberry jam-infused cake. grace was duly skeptical, but the picture on the website convinced her (imho, all recipes should have pictures) and there we were, 2am on a Saturday, making this cake. somehow that was the only time we had.

luckily, the cake was easy, and from what i could tell from the murmurs of contentment from friends who ate it, i think pretty good.

blackberry jam cake, adapted from 101 cookbooks

1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 taspoon ground cloves
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
6 tablespoons butter
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 eggs
3 tablespoons sour cream
1 cup blackberry jam
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
5 tablespoons heavy cream
2 teaspoons butter
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

reheat oven to 350. butter a 7-inch Bundt pan. mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

cream butter and brown sugar until light. beat in eggs, one at a time. beat in sour cream. stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture until barely blended. stir in jam and nuts. pour into buttered pan. bake until done, about 30 minutes. when cool, invert the cake onto a platter and ice with quick brown-sugar icing.

combine brown sugar, cream, butter, and salt and cook slowly until it just bubbles. remove from heat. cool slightly, then add vanilla. beat the icing until it can be spread.

oh and (sorry for the burying-the-lede part!) ummm, columbia business school accepted me as part of the class of 2011. they must be a little crazy, or not realize that i'm terrible at math, but in any case- yay! i felt like i've been on the precipice of something lately, and it was either going to be school, a house, or a baby. i think my parents would have had a heart attack at the latter two, so for now, school will suffice. my brother thinks i should get an attaché case- hahaha! i'm sticking to my beat-up tote bag with bacon and eggs on the front thankyouverymuch. but don't worry, not much will change here on caketime and i promise to never use the word amortization.
Clare said...

Andrea: congratulations! World: watch out!

Lindsey L. Delahanty said...

Sounds delish! I love berries in any shape, form, recipe, incarnation, etc. Was LOVELY meeting you gals at Trevor and Julia's beautiful wedding last week! Can't wait to read about more cakey adventures...

rrrich said...

Cake looks awesome! I would never ever think of making that until I saw those pics....yum! :)

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