This crumb cake, which makes an excellent breakfast, is the pastry equivalent of a one-dish meal. In just one bowl, you prepare the topping, and then you use half the crumbs to make the cake batter. We’re flavoring the cake with candied ginger and blueberries, but many other ingredient combinations can be used; the versatility of this recipe makes it one of my favorites. For example, blackberries and lemon marmalade would change the flavor from spicy and sweet to zesty and tart.
Once fresh summer berries are gone, make your crumb cake with strawberry preserves or even cherry pie filling from a can. The spices can be changed up, too: Black sesame seeds and honey-soaked mandarin oranges would pair beautifully. Whatever flavor combination you choose, make sure to call a friend, steep a pot of tea and enjoy the fruits of your labor – even though, truly, not much labor is required.
One-Bowl Candied Ginger-Blueberry Crumb Cake
The cardamom and nutmeg in this recipe are optional; if you don’t love those flavors, feel free to omit! As for other flavorings, the candied ginger and blueberries are also optional; substitute them for ½ to ¾ cup fruit filling or preserves of your choice. If you go that route, don’t add filling to the bowl of your stand mixer; instead, add it after you’ve spread your batter into the prepared pan but before you’ve added reserved crumbs.
Serves | 10 to 12 |
- nonstick cooking oil spray
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1½ cups brown sugar, tightly packed
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 2½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- pinch ground cardamom
- pinch freshly grated nutmeg
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 large egg
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 Tbsp candied ginger, diced
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
| Preparation | Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9-inch round or square cake pan with nonstick cooking oil spray and line with parchment paper. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add butter, brown sugar, salt, flour and spices, if using, and cream until small crumbs form. Divide crumbs in half, reserving approximately 2½ cups to a clean sheet of parchment paper; set aside.
To remaining dough in the bowl of your stand mixer, add baking soda and egg, creaming until smooth. Add vanilla extract and sour cream, mixing until evenly combined. Stir candied ginger and blueberries in by hand. Spread batter into the bottom of prepared pan. Cover with reserved crumbs. Bake until cake is puffed, golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, approximately 50 to 60 minutes. Allow to slightly cool at room temperature before serving. To unmold cake, run a knife around perimeter of pan to loosen, top pan with a cookie tray and carefully flip. Remove cake pan, peel off parchment paper and transfer cake, bottom-side down, to a serving platter. Serve.