Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

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Hey, there! While I am away snuggling this brand new babe and trying to navigate parenthood (aka keep him alive) I’ve asked a few friendly bloggers to share a recipe with you. Next up is Sarah from the ever-fantastic The Sugar Hit! Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

I like big BUNDTS, and I cannot lie. Sorry, that joke just never gets old. Hello! I’m Sarah, from The Sugar Hit, here to guest post while Cindy miraculously produces and becomes accustomed to caring for a human child. I know – it’s nothing short of incredible.

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

I tried to think what I might bring along to meet with Cindy after she gets her new bebe home/just before she heads off to bring it into the world, if we didn’t live a few oceans away from each other. I settled on this Jam Donut Bundt Cake. There are so many reasons why, let me run through them for you.

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

Firstly, it’s delicious. Secondly, it actually keeps really well, so it’s perfect if you want to give your new mom-friend a lil’ something to snack on over the coming days. Thirdliciously, it’s brushed with butter and coated with cinnamon sugar, which is a good reason to do just about anything in my opinion. And fourthly, it’s so versatile; have it with coffee, have it for breakfast, or nuke it in the microwave for a few seconds and have it with a scoop of ice cream (no really, do that).

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

The other cool thing about this recipe is that it’s so simple – everything comes together in one bowl, and the jam comes straight out of a jar. So this is just the kind of recipe that would be nice to deliver hand written along with the cake itself, because it’s pretty perfect mom-material. So, Miss Cindy, consider this my virtual hand written recipe for you. And congratulations in advance, Mama!

Blackberry Jam Donut Bundt Cake

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JAM DONUT CAKE!

For the cake:

2 + 2/3 cups (400g) all-purpose flour

2 + ½ tsp baking powder

1 cup (225g) superfine sugar

1 + ½ sticks (175g) butter, melted

1 cup (250ml) milk

2 whole eggs

1 tsp grated nutmeg

½ cup (125ml) blackberry jam

For the coating (optional):

½ cup superfine sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

1 stick of butter, melted.

  1. Grease a 9 inch (23cm) bundt tin well, and preheat your oven to 350F (180C).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and sugar until well combined.
  3. In a separate jug, stir together the melted butter, milk, eggs and nutmeg.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir everything together with a wooden spoon until well combined.
  5. Pour half of the batter into the bundt tin, and spread the batter up the sides of the tin with the back of a spoon. Don’t worry too much about this step – basically you just want to make sure the jam is encased in the batter, and doesn’t leak out.
  6. Dollop the jam on top of the batter, forming a ring of jam without touching the edges of the tin, and then dollop over the rest of the cake batter, and smooth it out gently, so that all the jam is covered.
  7. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean (don’t poke it into the jam).  Leave to cool in the tin for about 5 minutes, and then carefully turn out onto a wire rack to cool further.
  8. When you’re ready to serve the cake, brush is with the melted butter, and then stir together the sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle the cake liberally with it, pressing gently if necessary to make it adhere. Serve, warm, cold, hot, with tea, coffee or with ice cream! [/recipe]

Fold-Over Rhuberry Pie

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I always know it’s truly the beginning of spring when rhubarb starts showing up at the store in all of it’s ruby-stalked glory. I love, love, LOVE rhubarb with all of it’s weird, vegetal, fruitness. It looks a lot like celery, but it’s flavor is reminiscent of tart berries–which it incidentally pairs beautifully with–and has the best color when cooked. The hue of cooked rhubarb can run the spectrum between a blush of pink to hot magenta, depending on how red your stalks are to begin with.

One of my favorite things to make with rhubarb is a pie. Maybe because flaky, buttery pastry and tart-fruity fillings were made for each other. Maybe because it reminds me of my great-grandmother, her little garden patch full of rhubarb, and her fabulously untouched 60′s decor. I’m talking tortoise, seashell-shaped bead curtains, green shag carpeting, and vibrant granny-square afghans…but I digress. Basically it’s springtime comfort and what pairs better with rhubarb than berries? I am using a mix of marion and raspberries here–because honestly, I’m not so into cooked strawberries. Really, though, any berry you like will pair perfectly with the tart rhubarb. Just be sure to serve it with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream.

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Fold-Over Rhuberry Pie

Rhubarb and a mix of berries meet in this fold-over pie, no pie plate necessary.

This pie dough has a bit of sour cream to add some tenderness, along with the flakiness the butter adds. You will only use half of the pie crust recipe. Make another pie (unbaked) to freeze for later, OR just freeze the crust for another use!

Pie Crust:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 sticks cold butter, cubed

2 tablespoons sour cream

4-6 tablespoons ice water

Rhuberry Filling:

1 cup diced rhubarb

1 cup mixed berries (I used 1/2 cup each marion and raspberries)

1/4 to 1/3 cup sugar (to taste)

1 teaspoon cornstarch

For brushing:

1 egg

1 tablespoon milk

sugar

Place the flour, kosher salt, and cold butter in a bowl (or in the bowl of a food processor) and pinch in the butter (or pulse) until you get a coarse meal with some incorporated bits and some pea-sized bits. Fold (or pulse) in the sour cream, as well as the water beginning with 4 tablespoons, just until the dough sticks together when pinched between your fingers. Add more water only if the dough does not come together. Turn out the dough and knead just a few times until it comes together. Divide the dough in half and shape into a disk. Wrap each dough disk well in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. If you are saving one disk of dough for later, go ahead and freeze it.

Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk the egg and milk together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Place the diced rhubarb, berries, sugar, and cornstarch in a bowl and toss to combine. Roll out one of the dough disks into a rough, large rectangle. Place the rectangle of dough onto the baking sheet, one half may flap over the edge of the pan, but it’s okay since you’ll be folding it over the filling anyway. Brush the edge of the dough with the egg mixture, and mound the rhubarb-berry mixture in center of one side of the rectangle. Fold the naked half of the dough over the rhubarb-berry side and press gently along the edges where you have brushed the egg mixture to seal. Using a pastry cutter or paring knife, trim the edge of the crust off to create a large pop-tart shaped pie. Crimp the edges with a fork, if you like, and brush the top of the pie with more of the egg mixture, sprinkle with sugar, and slash some vents in the top of the pie with a knife. Bake in the preheated oven for about 40 minutes or until the pie is golden, the crust edges look flaky, and the juices from the filling are bubbling. Remove from the oven and cool at least 15 minutes before cutting and serving.

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Super Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

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This post is a little different, as I developed this recipe as a collaboration with my old high school. I was contacted by a lovely woman named Garney, who works at the high school I went to, about a career board display she and some yearbook students were working on themed “Oh, the places you’ll go…” and they thought that this whole blogging and recipe-makin’ thing I do was interesting. The display went live today…and, seriously, who would have thought!? Especially among people who have become lawyers or are headed for medical school. Definitely not too-cool-for-high-school me. I went to a teeny high school, ECHS, in a speck of a town in the middle of Nevada. When I mean teeny, I mean my graduating class had 21 students in it. I did yearbook, the school newspaper, was a cheerleader, and worked at the community pool as a lifeguard. I was not cool at all and was a total awkward-weirdo…and I mean, I kinda still am, I’ve just embraced it. My favorite things to do included writing super-inaccurate-yet-fun horoscopes for the newspaper and using deadlines as an excuse to cut-out on PE, doing photo layouts for the yearbook, as a cheerleader I loved making huge hand-lettered signs for games, and working at the pool was pretty fun since a lot of my friends worked there too. Like many high-school kids, my free time was super important to me and I could often be found hanging out with my pals, driving around aimlessly, and drinking cherry-diet-pepsi’s from the drive-in. I also spent a lot of that free time baking cookies (or boxed cakes or making magazine collages) whilst chit-chatting with my girlfriends. Though I never Instagram-ed or took phone pictures of those cookies since I only had a cell phone my senior year, had about 4 numbers in it, and it was a huge, red, Nokia-brick with a pull-out antennae…no camera in sight.

Truth be told, whenever I made chocolate chip cookies, I would always make the recipe on the back of the chocolate chip bag. Sometimes I would add some huge scoops of peanut butter to the dough, sometimes I’d add walnuts, I almost never measured as carefully as I do now, but basically, I never deviated from that classic recipe. Now that I bake much more and many more things, I have tried many a cookie recipe and I think these chocolate chip cookies may be my favorite yet. They are super soft, tender, a little thick–which is how I love my chocolate chip cookies–and packed with lots of dark chocolate. There’s cream cheese in this dough, which adds to the tenderness, as well as contributing a pleasant tang to the buttery, toffee-like flavor of the dough. These cookies don’t bake up flat, but pleasantly domed with a little chewy edge with soft middles. In my opinion they are pretty much perfect and definitely worth trying out…because, honestly, there are never too many chocolate chip cookie recipes in the world.

Some things I did not know about baking in high school that will save you from a broken-cookie heart:

Baking powder is not the same as baking soda. Baking powder has baking soda plus an acid added to it to create the lift necessary in this recipe. Science!

Don’t forget the salt! I used to think it was okay to just leave salt out of baked goods. Don’t be teen-me! Salt makes all sweet things sing. For most purposes, I use kosher salt, but sea salt is nice too.

Parchment paper and waxed paper are not one in the same. Parchment is coated with silicone which ensures your baked goods will not stick and will also hold up to heat…waxed paper is coated with wax, will not ensure that you baked goods do not stick, isn’t meant to be heated (because wax melts!), and will just break your cookie-lovin’ heart.

Beating the butter, cream cheese, and sugars until fluffy will just whip air into your cookie, making it dry and crumbly, instead of soft and tender.

[recipe]

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Super Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

The addition of cream cheese in these cookies makes them extra tender and soft, as well as adding a little bit of tang.

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

2 sticks butter

1/3 cup whipped cream cheese

1 cup light brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips

Sea salt for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cornstarch, and salt. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl using a hand mixer, or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, cream cheese, and both sugars together until just combined, but not fluffy.  Scrape the bowl and add the eggs and vanilla, mix to combine completely. Add the flour mixture you set aside earlier and mix until combined, scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl and continue to mix until everything is just mixed together, but well blended. Fold in the chocolate chips and place the cookie dough in the refrigerator for at least 30, up to overnight. Using a cookie scoop or 2-3 heaping tablespoons, scoop dough into balls and place onto a baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 14-16 minutes or until the edges begin to brown. Allow to cool at least 5 minutes before serving.

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