Saturday, September 3, 2011

Blueberry Ricotta Coffee Cake

This morning I went to the farmers’ market in Old Town Alexandria in search of blueberries to use in this cake.  In addition to the peaches, figs, plums, potatoes, free range chicken and grass-fed beef, I brought home some beautiful West Virginia blueberries.  I knew they would pair wonderfully with ricotta into a moist coffee cake with a crunchy streusel topping.

This cake was really easy to put together and the ricotta gives it such a moist and rich texture.  You could swap different kinds of berries into the recipe depending on what you have on hand or what looks especially tasty that day.  I was tempted by some blackberries and raspberries at the market this morning that would be delightful in this cake.  Enjoy with coffee for breakfast, or as a yummy dessert!

Blueberry Ricotta Coffee Cake
Makes one 8-inch square cake

For the streusel:
⅓ cup sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon cinnamon

For the cake:
1½ cups all purpose flour
¾ cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk ricotta
2 large eggs
1 generous cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat the oven to 350˚F.  Butter and flour an 8-inch square or 9-inch round baking dish (or spray with non-stick spray).

To make the streusel, combine the sugar, flour, butter, and cinnamon with a fork until crumbly.  Set aside.

To make the cake, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the ricotta and eggs.  Toss the blueberries in a tablespoon of the flour mixture.  This will help keep the blueberries from sinking in the batter.

Add the flour mixture to the ricotta-egg mixture and stir just until barely combined.  Stir in the blueberries until evenly distributed.  Pour the batter into the prepared dish.  Sprinkle the top of the cake with the streusel mixture.

Bake in the preheated oven for 30-33 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.  Allow the cake to cool for a few minutes before cutting.

(Recipe adapted from Joy of Cooking)

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