There are always those recipes that call for a tablespoon of this, a dollop of that or a quarter cup of an exotic or rarely-used ingredient. Said item then sits in your refrigerator, ducking behind those everyday stars – like milk and orange juice – just taunting you to make use of it before it morphs into a science experiment.
The latter is usually the way those things go over here. But there are those rare moments when I become this resourceful (not wasteful) keeper of the kitchen. And so I had to share this recipe for a lemon buttermilk cake that saved me from dumping the creamy remains of this icebox lurker.
It’s spongy, lemony and all-around delicious – the only thing I would change is to double up on the glaze. With the dairy-heavy ingredients, I have this vision of this recipe as one handed down between the generations of a farming family. Somewhere out in the Midwest, on a green patchwork of well-tended fields, the creamy batter would be stirred with love and efficiency in a farmhouse kitchen, and placed in a window to cool only just until a small hand couldn’t resist crumbling off a corner any longer.
Agrarian roots or not, this is a darn good cake, and perfect excuse to use the leftover buttermilk taking up space in your fridge.
We experienced the perfect reason-to-escape storm earlier this month: a wedding of a dear friend, Todd’s birthday and a grandmother all-too-willing to take on our toddler for four whole days. As an added bonus, we were returning to wine-soaked Sonoma, where we had spent a long weekend following our wedding. Our first trip as Mr.+Mrs., and one that kicked-off our year of sporadic travel (everywhere from northern Wisconsin to Japan) that we classified as our honeymoon.
Years ago we stayed at the mod cottages of the Duchamp in Healdsburg, a town that has been significantly built up in the last seven years. This trip was also coupled with a work jaunt (I know, tough gig) and we bunked at the charming Farmhouse Inn. Here’s a little dispatch/postcard from our weekend among the vines, and a few pics we snapped, too.
Local bounty at Shed.
Winery picnic with friends. I could do this every day.
Just your average Friday afternoon.
Gorgeous couple, gorgeous setting. Congrats Julie + Ben!
Birthday swim in the Russian River.
The towers of dark berries have returned to the farmers market and that calls for berry crumble. I will take chocolate anything over a fruit pie, always. But, there is something about the jumble of raspberries, blackberries and blueberries with that buttery oatmeal cookie-like topping that I can’t pass up this time of year. Oh, and it’s super easy to make too, which only helps the cause.
1 cup blueberries
1 cup blackberries
1 cup raspberries
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2/3 cup flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
Preheat oven to 375°. Adjust oven rack to upper third. Rinse and drain berries. Toss berries with sugar, lemon juice, and 2 tsp. flour and pour into 9″ glass pie plate. In medium bowl, blend remaining flour, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, nutmeg and oats with fingers until crumbly. Sprinkle topping over berries. Bake 30 to 35 minutes until fruit is bubbly and top is browned. Serve warm with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.