Friday, July 2, 2010

Blackberry Peach Cake

My stamping friend, Sue, over at Sue's Stamping Stuff, sent me a link to a blackberry cake that looked delicious and challenged me to make it with our stash of  fresh picked blackberries.  It looked good but the couple of reviews I found said the cake was heavy sooooooo.....I played around with a couple of ideas, combined a few recipes and came up with what we think is a fabulous cake.  The first one was delicious.  The first one????  Yes, this is the second one...I decided the first one didn't have enough blackberries so had to make another....right...right? 
  Hey, Sue, this piece is for you! There's plenty for everyone else too so come on over.  I'll put the coffee on.
Here's how I changed the recipe...

  1. The original mixed the blackberries with sugar before scattering them on the bottom of the cake pan.  I was afraid that would make the berries "juice up" too much and honestly, the frosting and cake are sweet enough to balance the berries. 

  2. I used my own cake recipe

  3. I added a yummy peach filling...blackberries and peaches, oh my!

  4. The original had a plain buttercream frosting.  I made a fresh peach buttercream.  Delish!!

Baking a cake from scratch is easy and so much better tasting than from a box.  Short on problem. 
You can bake the cake layers a day ahead and refrigerate the layers with waxed paper between the layers.  The peach filling can be made several days in advance and  refrigerated.  The frosting takes just minutes. 

Basic White Cake with Blackberries

Grease and flour 3 - 8" baking pans. (I sprayed with Baker's Joy)  Scatter blackberries to cover the bottom of the pan, leaving just a small space between each one.  Since blackberries are different sizes, I didn't measure but you want a good amount.

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
2  cups sugar
3 cups cake flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup milk
2/3 cup water
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 tsp. almond extract
6 egg whites, room temperature

Blackberries (this is a great recipe for a white cake...without the blackberries!)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Beat butter, and shortening at med. speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well.

Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; add to butter mixture alternately with with milk and water, beginning and ending with flour mixture.  Beat at low speed until blended after each addition.  Stir in extracts. 

In separate bowl, beat egg whites at high speed until stiff peaks form; fold about 1/3 of the egg whites into the batter.  Gradually fold in the rest of the egg whites.  Pour the batter over the blackberries in the prepared pans.

Bake at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until a wooden pickinserted in center comes out clean.  Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes.  Remove from pans to wire racks, and let cool 15 minutes.  Wrap in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator until ready to fill and frost. 

Peach Filling (Make a day ahead - needs to chill)

16 oz. sliced peaches fresh (may use thawed, drained frozen peaches)
1 c. sugar
2 T. butter
2 T. lemon juice
1 envelope unflavored gelatin (I used Knox)
3 T. water
1 1/2 t. peach liqueur  (I didn't have any on hand so didn't use)

Cook first 4 ingredients in a med. saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, 30 minutes.  Let cool slightly.

Sprinkle gelatin over 3 T. water in a small saucepan; let stand 1 minute.  Cook over low heat, stirring often until the gelatin dissolves (about 2 minutes)

Process the peach mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides.  Stir in gelatin and peach liqueur, if using.  Cover and chill 8 hours.

Peach Buttercream

1 c. unsalted butter, softened
32 oz. confectioner's sugar
1 fresh peach, peeled and diced

Beat butter until creamy and light.  Add peaches and beat again.  Mix in confectioner's sugar until frosting is of spreading consistency.  You may need to add a bit more sugar if peach is very juicy.

To assemble the cake, place the first layer berry side up on a cake plate.  Cover the top with a small amount of frosting covering to the edge of the cake layer.  Spoon peach filling over the frosting, leaving a 1" at the edges.  Add the second cake layer, repeat with frosting and peach filling.  Place the final layer blackberry side down,  frost cake using the remaining frosting.

Any leftover peach filling is delicious as a spread on toast or English muffins.  (DH suggestion)

Enjoy!!  Let me know if you bake one...I'll be right over.

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