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Friday, July 4, 2014

Blueberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

Friendship can be a tricky thing. Making them, keeping them and enjoying them gets harder as you get older. If you're fortunate enough to have lifelong friendships that make you feel comfortable and open, then congratulations. But for most of us, friendships that survive growing up, marriage, kids, time and distance is a rare animal indeed. And fighting, let's not forget the fights, because friends who care about each other will invariably get into arguments.

As you get older and become set in your ways it's harder to approach other people, to put yourself out there on a ledge and expose your true self for the sake of making a new friend. Finding those that share similar life experiences or an interest in the same things can even be a chore. And if you're already married to your BEST friend it's nearly impossible to find another friend who will measure up.

Hell, I'm not even sure what point I'm trying to make with this post unless it's to say hold onto your friends. Or maybe I'm saying friends are a pain-in-the-butt that may or may not be worth the frustration. It's a social crapshoot sometimes so draw your own conclusions on what I'm trying to say.

I had some friends over from dinner and cake, so a post about friendship sounded like a good idea in my head, but now....

Let's just talk about the cake, alright?

It's a fairly straight-forward coffee cake base, with a tender crumb. I think I over-baked it a little because I found the cake portion to be a little dry. The cream cheese topping adds a nice tang to what could have been a boring cake. The blueberry and almonds are a great compliment to the cream cheese and make for a great combination. My friends liked it.

Blueberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

    For the blueberry topping:
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 cup + 2 teaspoons water, divided
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • For the cake:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup plain or vanilla yogurt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • For the topping and assembly:
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
To make the blueberry topping:
Combine blueberries, 1/4 cup water, and lemon juice in a 1- to 2-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils. Lower heat and simmer the mixture, stirring occasionally. Simmer until blueberries have split and released their juices (about 3 minutes).
In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and 2 teaspoons water. Add to blueberry mixture. Stir until thickened (about 1 minute).
Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
To make the cake:
Preheat oven to 350°. Butter and flour a 9- or 10-inch springform pan.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour and sugar. Add butter and mix with a pastry blender or a fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Remove 1/2 cup of mixture and set aside to use for the topping.
Add lemon zest, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to remaining flour mixture. Mix just until combined.
In a separate bowl, mix yogurt, egg, and vanilla until blended and smooth. Add to flour mixture and mix just until combined.
Transfer batter to prepared pan. Spread evenly.
To make the topping and assemble the cake:
Beat cream cheese, sugar, egg, and lemon juice until smooth. Spread mixture over cake batter, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edges.
Spread cooled blueberry mixture over cream cheese mixture. Leave some of the cream cheese mixture visible around the outermost edges.
Stir almonds into reserved cake mixture. Sprinkle over cake, placing most of the mixture around the outer edges.
Bake 30 to 40 minutes, or until the top of the cake is golden brown and the center of the cake barely jiggles when the pan is gently shaken.
Cool cake in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Then, release the pan's latch and remove the sides of the pan.
Serve warm or at room temperature.


  1. I get your post and I totally agree. Friendships are alot of hard work and with other things thrown into the mix, pulling you at other places, they seem to fall by the wayside. But let me tell you that you are a good friend and a good person. I may not talk or see you but I will always consider you a friend and good company. I guess the same can be said about Martin too! :)

  2. I thought the cake was wonderful, and I completely agree with your take on friendship.You are an amazing hostess!!!! I myself am leary of making new friends.
    Often Robert and I talk about expanding our very small circle of friends, but then it's almost like training them. Yes I know it's a horrible and wretched way to put it. But when you find someone you click's freaking magical man!
    Someone who doesnt judge you, someone who is brutally honest and you can be too..... that it's hysterical!!!! Sometimes in a sad way other times in a wicked awesome way! Someone you can just be your plain crazy self with...the good, the bad and the ugly!!! Just rockin' out the years together with total and complete insanity, lovin' every minute of it!!!
    I must say i disagree with friendships being "hard work" it shouldn't be that will come easy, you will at times disagree, you build each other up, honesty really is key be it kindly or brutally (cause really good friends will tell you like it is because they love and care about you and not for alternative reasons)!!!! Women are hard to be friends with....maybe that's why my bff is a dude...but on the flipside, I have finally found a female friendship that I think will last a lifetime and promise to stop obsessing with my own funeral plans!!! LOL wink wink!!!