This Blueberry Crumble Cake is like a warm hug from a dear friend, well maybe not a hug, because I know that crumble cakes are not able to hug, but I bet you might just receive one from human arms when they taste this cake! Perfect for a lazy weekend, Holiday breakfast, Mother’s Day, Easter or any special brunch.
BLUEBERRY CRUMBLE CAKE
This deliciously moist coffee cake is studded with fresh (or formerly frozen) blueberries, topped with a crunchy brown sugar crumble, then drizzled with a creamy vanilla glaze that hardens as it cools giving the cake the perfect crunch/crisp to chewy/moist ratio. Dreamy!!
I was reminded of this coffee cake when I was out in California with a group of girlfriends this past weekend, our hostess served us a similar coffee cake for breakfast on Saturday and it was sublime. While her’s didn’t have blueberries in it, the “hug” was the same.
I’ve been friends with these women since we’ve been girls! When women get together with their longtime friends, they turn back into those same gangly, awkward little girls (I’m speaking for myself here). Oh my goodness, we laughed, shared, cried, giggled, listened, reminisced, dreamt, prayed with and encouraged one another. The security of being with friends who really know YOU, your history, and your family is truly priceless.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and my boys, with every fiber of my being — however; in my humble opinion we were all made for relationship and sometimes we need the understanding, empathy and support of another woman. I would shrivel up without my family and girlfriends.
I was privileged to have grown up in the late 70’s and early 80’s with these girls in a unique situation that threw us together; all living on the same property with our families. It was the best thing that could have happened to us during those tough adolescent years, we truly became sisters! I won’t go into detail, because in all honesty unless you lived it I’m not sure you would understand, not even our spouses fully understand it. In just a few short years, our time together created a bond that wasn’t easily broken, we might have moved away, made new friends, raised our own families and yet this experience has drawn us back together. And I’m so glad it did.
THE IMPORTANCE OF FRIENDSHIP
It’s been 40 years since we first met as young girls, while we’ve seen each other at weddings and such, we haven’t all been together in 31 years, BUT you’d have thought we saw each other a month ago. We picked up right where we left off! This time together brought us back to the core of our friendship and I am so very grateful for these women; I have a feeling that we won’t go nearly as long as we did before seeing each other again.
To be have a friend, one must BE a friend; give of yourself, even when you don’t have much to give.
Extend, risk and humble yourself to the beauty of authentic, real friendship.
Where truth can be told, in love; where you can see the good, the beauty, and even help heal deep wounds.
Through our vulnerability with one another we can encourage, hold up, and most especially pray for and with one another.
The older I get the more I realize the importance of these times with girlfriends who really know and love you, just as you are. Friends who see through the extra pounds and wrinkles, to the sweet, kind, caring and vulnerable heart of that young girl that still lies somewhere beneath layers of now crepe-y skin; reminding you of the treasure you are to this world.
This is a tribute to my dear, life-long, forever friends; my sisters-in-Christ — Dawn, Julie, Lisa and Shawn; what we have, let’s not let go of, it’s too precious to put off for long; let’s use the God-given gift of friendship to stay in one another’s lives, encouraging one another, creating more memories together.
And so I encourage YOU my dear reader, to reach out to others; whether it’s re-kindling a friendship from long ago, making a new friend, or simply risking going deeper in a current friendship; don’t hesitate, jump in with your whole heart! You won’t regret it! I’m getting all emotional just writing this, so on to our Blueberry Crumble Cake!
“As iron sharpens iron, so one (wo)man sharpens another” Proverbs 27:17
First things first, wash your blueberries and let sit on paper towels to dry, if fresh and if frozen, remove from freezer and allow to thaw, if you totally spaced thawing, have no fear, you may just need to bake a little longer, but be sure to coat them in flour, see below.
Easy Crumb Topping
Add softened butter* and mix well, using your fingers if necessary, until the mixture starts to stick together into large clumps/crumbs. It should hold together when pressed. I like to use my mixer, it takes a bit, but I feel like the butter is better distributed in the long run. But you can always just use a pastry cutter or your fingers to mix.
WHY USE REAL BUTTER?
No substitutes, truly there is no substitute for real, cream butter. If it’s soft right from the fridge, it’s not real butter, and most likely has a higher water and/or oil content which can affect how the cake and especially the crumb topping bakes. If you forgot to take your butter out, have no fear, just quick soften your butter if needed by microwaving for 6-12 seconds.
Look at those bodacious, beautiful, buttery crumbs!
BAKERS TIP | Place crumb topping in fridge or freezer while making the cake batter, this will chill the butter once again, so your crumb topping doesn’t melt into your cake while baking.
Blueberry Crumble Cake
In a large batter bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, add all purpose flour, sugar, eggs, milk, butter and baking powder and salt. I’ve made it both ways, with putting all of your dry ingredients first, then your butter, then your liquids and the end batter was the same, so whatever works best for you.
Mix on low, until combined, careful not to over mix, there might even be a few lumps and it’ll be fairly thick, don’t worry.
Gently fold the blueberries into the batter, no need to coat them in flour if you are using fresh blueberries, see below for frozen.
Can I Use Frozen Blueberries instead of Fresh
YES! Go for it, but before folding in frozen blueberries, gently toss to coat in a couple tablespoons of flour, as this will help them not bleed as much, but never fear, while it might make your cake purple, it’ll still taste terrific!
Below are two pictures, one of frozen (flour coated) blueberries and the other of fresh.
Fresh berries going into the batter…
Lightly grease a 9″ springform pan or a 9″ deep square pan if you don’t have a springform. If desired for easier removal from pan, cut out a 9″ round (or square) of parchment, lightly spray with oil and place in bottom of pan.
Try splitting the batter into two smaller 6″ springform pans in order to get two cakes from one prep! Freeze one or give one away.
The first picture below is using frozen berries, and you can see I did have some “bleeding,” the second picture is using fresh berries. Both cakes turned out delicious!! One was just more purple-y than the other.
BAKING PAN OPTIONS
- Substitute a deep 9″ square or round pan, spray well with non-stick spray or line with parchment paper.
- Or use an 8″ springform pan, increasing baking time by 10 minutes or more.
- Or a 10″ springform (reduce bake time by 10 minutes or so).
- Split batter between 2 smaller pans, such as 2 – 6″ springform pans. Bake 30-40 minutes, putting foil on top if gets too brown. Freeze one for later or give one away to a neighbor and make their day!
Crumble the crumb topping evenly over the top of the cake batter, leaving some larger chunks and some smaller so you have a traditional “crumble” topping.
Pop it in your preheated 375º oven and bake it for 50-65 minutes until the top is golden and the center is cooked. If it starts getting too brown on top but isn’t done, carefully lay a piece of foil over the top.
HOW TO TELL IF YOUR CRUMB CAKE IS DONE
For some reason I find it hard to tell when a crumb topped cakes are finished baking, even when I stick the toothpick in the center, it’ll appear to be done, so if yours comes out a bit gooey in the middle, give yourself grace and enjoy the cake, because it’s still delicious!
Remove from oven and allow to cool 10 minutes in pan before pouring the vanilla glaze (see recipe) over the top of the warm cake.
Gently run a butter knife around the edge of the pan, to loosen and open the cuff of the springform pan. Serve warm (my favorite) or cooled completely.
Store in fridge — good up to about a week, if it lasts that long. Warm in microwave for a few seconds before devouring.
Not a blueberry fan? Substitute the same amount of fresh or frozen berries or even rhubarb (but paired with a sweeter berry)! Or try this Overnight Cinnamon Crunch French Toast or The Best Ooey-Gooey Cinnamon Rolls
- Strawberries (sliced)
This recipe is adapted from Cookies & Cups.
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- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar (I use all natural cane sugar)
- 1/3 cup plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour (I use unbleached flour)
- 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter (no substitutions), room temp
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (I like unbleached)
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar (I use natural, unbleached, cane sugar)
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup butter, room temp (I use salted, if unsalted, add 1 teaspoon salt)
- 3/4 cup milk (I use whole milk)
- 1 egg (room temp if possible)
- 2 cups fresh* blueberries (washed and patted dry, any stems removed)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 - 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2-3 Tablespoons milk or cream
- *Frozen blueberries may be used, if possible thaw and drain, toss gently in a couple tablespoons of flour to coat, that will help the blueberries to not bleed as much.
Preheat oven to 375° and spray 9" springform pan with nonstick spray and if desired, cut out a piece of parchment paper for easier transfer to serving dish.
- In medium bowl combine all crumb dry ingredients and stir. Cut butter into smaller chunks and mix with mixer until combined or using fingers or pastry cutter mix until butter is combined and you can squeeze together to form clumps. Place mixture in fridge until ready to use.
- In large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine. Add softened butter, in chunks, milk and egg.
- Using a mixer, mix until mostly smooth and combined. Batter will be thick, if too thick, add additional 1/4 cup milk. Gently fold in washed/dried blueberries into the batter.
- Pour into prepared 9" springform pan (see options in notes). Remove crumble from fridge and crumble on top of coffee cake batter, larger marble sized chunks. Bake 50-65 minutes until top is golden and center is firm, toothpick may or may not come out clean. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Then glaze.
- Prepare glaze while cake is cooling. In a small bowl, mix powdered sugar, vanilla and milk/cream until smooth and pourable consistency.
- Pour over top of warm cake for glaze that hardens and melts into cake, or if preferred, wait until cake is cooled completely then pour glaze over.*Glaze is pretty, but can definitely be left off the cake.
- To serve, using a butter knife, gently run around the edge of the cuff of the springform. Open springform and gently lift off. If you used a piece of parchment, slide a flat spatula or large knife under and carefully slide off springform bottom onto plate or serving dish. Serve cooled or warm, may favorite!
Always use real butter for baking, no spreads or blends. I use salted and unsalted butters interchangeably, just decrease salt slightly in your recipe if using salted.
Substitute any other berries; strawberries (sliced), blackberries, raspberries are all delicious. Substitute equal amounts of fresh or frozen.
- Substitute a deep 9" square or round pan.
- Or use an 8"springform pan, increasing baking time by 10 minutes or more.
- Or a 10" springform (reduce bake time by 10 minutes or so).
- Split batter between 2 smaller pans, such as 2 - 6" springform pans. Bake 30-40 minutes, putting foil on top if gets too brown. Freeze one for later.
This recipe was adapted from Cookies & Cups Blueberry Muffin Cake
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- WINCO AASP-063 Springform Pan with Detachable Bottom, 6-Inch, Anodized Aluminum
- JAMIE OLIVER Round Springform Cake Tin, 9 Inches, Nonstick
- Anchor Hocking 2 Quart Glass Batter Bowl With Lid (81106L11)
- OXO Good Grips Plastic Brownie Spatula for Non-stick Pans, Black
- Zulka Morena Pure Cane Sugar, Unfined & Non-gmo All Natural Sugar, 4 Lb (Pack of 2)
- OXO Good Grips Angled Measuring Cup, Mini, Clear
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 319 Total Fat: 8g Saturated Fat: 5g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 3g Cholesterol: 35mg Sodium: 300mg Carbohydrates: 59g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 37g Protein: 4g