Blueberry-Juniper Rye Cake

Time to Cook: 
90
Time to Prepare: 
30
Number of Servings: 
12

This recipe is perfect for berry season!

Ingredients

Cake

1.5 cups dark (whole grain) rye flour
1 cup all purpose flour preferably unbleached
1.25 cups sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp juniper berries ground
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup unsalted butter softened
2 large eggs
1.5 cups blueberries
1 cup milk

Glaze

2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp water
1/2 tsp dried juniper berries ground
1/4 tsp cinnamon

Blueberry Curd

1.5 cups blueberries
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 egg yolks
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 tsp lemon zest


Directions

Cake

Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C).
In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and baking powder. Cut in the butter with a pastry mixer. Stop once the butter has been cut into small pieces and the mixture looks like smallish crumbs.
Combine the milk and eggs and add them to the large bowl containing the flour mixture. Stir until the whole mixture is moist and just combined.
Add the blueberries to the batter and combine gently.
Pour the batter into a lightly greased or parchment paper-lined large loaf tin. You can also use two square or round cake tins, though make sure to adjust the cooking time (see Step 5).
Bake for 75-85 minutes, or until a toothpick can pierce the center of the cake and emerge dry. Prepare the glaze while the cake bakes.
Brush glaze over the finished cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. Use all of the glaze by allowing it to soak in and brushing it on in several coats.
Let the finished cake cool, ideally overnight, but for at least 2 hours.

Glaze

Combine all of the glaze ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer. Simmer for 2 minutes then let the glaze stand for 10-15 minutes.
Pour the glaze through a small strainer or cheesecloth in order to filter out the cinnamon and juniper pieces. Set the syrupy glaze aside to use when the cake is done baking.

Blueberry Curd

Place the blueberries and lemon juice in a small saucepan and heat on the stovetop over low heat, stirring frequently to break up the blueberries and avoid scorching. If you have trouble getting enough liquid to release at first, you can add a splash of water. Continue to cook and stir until all the berries have cooked and burst, leaving you with a thick sauce; about 5-7 minutes. Allow the mixture to cool while you prepare the other ingredients.
Combine all of the curd ingredients in a powerful high-speed blender and process for 5 minutes at the highest speed setting. (No high-speed blender? Check out the notes below for variations)
Allow the finished curd to cool slightly and open the blender carefully, then refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

 

RECIPE NOTES

When preparing the curd, the blender instructions are the easiest and most effective way to go, but necessitates the use of a high-power/high-speed blender (e.g. a Vitamix). Blenders like this will combine the ingredients effectively while simultaneously cooking them with the heat of the blender. Low power blenders will not work the same way. If you don't have one of these blenders, there are other options listed below.

FOOD PROCESSOR VERSION: Prepare the blueberries and lemon juice as for the blender version. Combine the sugar and lemon zest, then cream them with the butter (use a food processor or mixer for this). Add the blueberry mixture and continue to mix, followed by the egg yolks and whole eggs, one at a time, mixing continually. Add the mixture to a small saucepan on a stovetop. Heat over a low flame, stirring continuously, until the curd has thickened and set (around 12-15 minutes). When finished remove from heat and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

TRADITIONAL STOVETOP VERSION: Prepare the blueberries and lemon juice as for the blender version, cooking a little longer to really break down the fruit. Press this mixture through a mesh sieve to get out the bits of blueberry skin. Add the blueberry puree, lemon zest, and butter to a small saucepan on a stovetop. Heat over a low flame, stirring and mixing until the butter is well mixed and homogeneous. Remove from heat and allow to cool to low temperature. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and egg yolks. When the blueberry/butter mixture is cool, return it to the stove over low heat and whisk in the eggs. Heat over a low flame, stirring continuously, until the curd has thickened and set (around 12-15 minutes). When finished remove from heat and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

 

Original Recipe