Blueberry Muffin Loaf Cake

Eileen Miller

Ingredients:

Lemon-sugar topping:
1/3 cup sugar (2 1/3 ounces)
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated zest from one lemon

Blueberry filling:
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 teaspoon sugar

Muffins:
1 cup fresh blueberries, picked over
1 1/8 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
2 large eggs
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:

For the topping: Stir together sugar and lemon zest in small bowl until combined; set aside.

For the filling:
1. Bring 1 cup blueberries and 1 teaspoon sugar to simmer in small saucepan over medium heat.

2. Cook, mashing berries with spoon several times and stirring frequently, until berries have broken down and mixture is thickened and reduced to 1/4 cup, about 6 minutes.

3. Transfer to small bowl and cool to room temperature, 10 to 15 minutes.

For the cake:
1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Spray 9x5 loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.

3. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in large bowl.

4. Whisk remaining 1 1/8 cups sugar and eggs together in medium bowl until thick and homogeneous, about 45 seconds.

5. Slowly whisk in butter and oil until combined.

6. Whisk in buttermilk and vanilla until combined.

7. Using rubber spatula, fold egg mixture and remaining cup blueberries into flour mixture until just moistened. (Batter will be very lumpy with few spots of dry flour; do not overmix.)

8. Pour half the batter into loaf pan. Spoon half the filling over the batter. Using chopstick or skewer, gently swirl berry filling into batter using figure-eight motion. Pour the remainder of the batter into the loaf pan. Spoon the rest of the filling over the batter. Swirl.

9. Sprinkle lemon sugar evenly over batter.

10. Bake until cake top is golden and just firm, about 1 hour. Cool muffins in pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack and cool before serving.

11. Garnish with sugared blueberries, if desired.