Brooke Dojny's Blueberry Snack Cake with Toasted Pecan Topping

By • July 17, 2012 • 28 Comments

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Author Notes: This cake is a study in textures. It has just enough cornmeal to give it structure and a yellow tint, without weighing down the batter. It bakes up lofty and tender, with a crackly sheen on top dotted with pecans. Adapted very slightly from The New England Cookbook (Harvard Common Press, 1999)Genius Recipes

Serves 8

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar, divided use
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup whole or lowfat milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan.
  2. Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Using an electric mixer or a food processor, cream the butter and 1 cup of the sugar together until smooth. Add the eggs, milk, vanilla, and lemon zest and process or beat until smooth. Spoon the flour mixture into the processor or bowl and pulse or beat just until the flour is incorporated. If the batter is in a food processor, transfer it to a large bowl.
  4. Sprinkle the blueberries over the batter and gently fold them in, just until combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top. Sprinkle with the nuts and then with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar.
  5. Bake until the nuts are deep brown and a tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool. (The cake can be wrapped well and stored at cool room temperature for 1 day or frozen.)
  6. Cut into squares or wedges in the pan to serve.
Jump to Comments (28)

Comments (28) Questions (2)

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2 months ago Bluejade

I like this cake a lot and have made it several times. Dusting the blueberries with flour before putting into the batter helps a lot. My husband is not so crazy about the cornmeal so I am going to sift it beforehand. But I like the crunchiness. It tastes better with the pecans on top but it can be made without. Maybe granola put into a blender would be good as a topping too.

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3 months ago Laura

This was delicious -- light, with a crisp topping and great blueberry flavor. And it was so easy and quick to make! All of my blueberries sunk to the bottom, which I'm not sure I mind, but next time I might try dusting them with flour and making sure they are towards the top when I put the batter in the pan. I will definitely make this again!

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3 months ago Raisa Brashi

This cake is so good!

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3 months ago LG

This cake was awesome and very simple to make I split the sugar half brown and half white. I plan to make it again with blueberries and peaches.

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about 1 year ago Dianecpa

I just made this for the third time and I used Italian plums! Quartered and pressed into the top, then sprinkled with pecans and sugar.....delicious!

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about 1 year ago Bluejade

A great recipe for fresh or frozen blueberries. Dusting the berries with flour is a good Idea, as suggested in comments. I like the lemon aspect of the cake more than the cornmeal.

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over 1 year ago Barb wyckoff

This came out so yummy- I can not believe how wonderful- I subbed in black walnuts on the top. It was worth heating up my kitchen for ...and in todays temperature that is saying alot!!!

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over 1 year ago Lisa21012

Any ideas about how this could be veganized?

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about 1 year ago Jacquie Chamberlain

I'd try 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce (in place of the eggs), 1/3 cup solid coconut oil (in place of the butter) and almond milk (in place of the dairy milk). I haven't tried it so I can't guarantee anything, but that would be my first attempt!

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over 1 year ago bluejeangourmet

we are just getting the first of lovely Texas blueberries and my fridge is full of them--can't wait to make this!

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over 1 year ago Fran McGinty

I made this in Sept using frozen wild blueberries, it came out great. My girlfriend's 3 sons gave it a 3 thumbs up. Her husband also enjoyed it. I loved it.Thank you for sharing.

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almost 2 years ago SSSV

Any tips for making this at high altitude (5900 ft)?

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over 1 year ago LeeLeeBee

I made it several times at 5300 feet with no changes.

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about 2 years ago debraroon

Can you use dried blueberries if you soak them first?

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almost 2 years ago Kristen Miglore

Kristen is the Executive Editor of Food52

Sorry we missed this question! Yes, you could, although it would have a different, more raisin-like flavor than the brightness of fresh or frozen -- might be nice for winter.

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about 2 years ago marydolly

I made this cake for my office this morning. It was a hit and super easy to make. I used turbinado sugar on the top which gave it a extra sweet crispy crunch. This one is a keeper!

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about 2 years ago Margaret McCormick

This cake is so easy and delicious -- like the best-ever blueberry muffin, but made in a pan. Recommend using demerara sugar on top of the cake for added texture.

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about 2 years ago gingerroot

This is a wonderful cake. I made it a week in advance, wrapped it tightly in plastic wrap and foil, and then unwrapped and defrosted the morning I served it. No one could believe it had been frozen - it was moist and the crumb soft. I am hosting a tea for 60 a week from today and plan on making a few of these for the event. Thanks for a great recipe!

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about 2 years ago The Cook's Tour

This looks fabulous. I am making it now for dinner tonight. Any suggestion for an accompaniment? Does it need a touch of whipped cream or creme fraiche? Or is it fine on its own? Thx!

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about 2 years ago LeeLeeBee

This recipe was a hit with my family - great texture and just sweet enough. I used cranberries instead of blueberries (did not increase the sugar) and polenta instead of cornmeal.

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about 2 years ago conniejac

Made this yesterday to be the dessert to a delicious summer dinner (lamb burgers, tzatziki, corn salad) and it was out of this world! Subtlety sweet with a great texture from the cornmeal. I did substitute silvered almonds for the pecans/walnuts as that was what i had in the freezer. I think I'd prefer this with almonds vs. pecans, i'd be concerned pecans/walnuts would overpower the soft blueberries! Nonetheless, delicious--thank you!!

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about 2 years ago Cooking Healthy For Me

I just made this recipe for card night - it was absolutely stunning! Delicious, light and easy! It will be a "go to" recipe in my kitchen! Thanks!

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about 2 years ago jpoertner

I just made this and has a great taste. However, all of the blueberries went to the bottom of the pan and that made it difficult to serve. Is there a way to avoid that?

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about 2 years ago OldGrayMare

If you toss the blueberries in a teensy bit of flour they won't sink to the bottom. I do that will all fruit recipes....also works with chocolate chips/chunks, etc.

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about 2 years ago jpoertner

Thanks - I do that with frozen blueberries but have never done it with fresh. I will try.