Blackberry Spice Cake

Meet my favorite summer cake. I’ve made it every year since 2003 and I wouldn’t dream of ending summer without it. This cake goes hand in hand with July and August, cicadas and muggy nights. It’s a simple spice cake, moistened with yogurt and studded with juicy blackberries. It comes together in no time. I now appreciate this fact even more, now that I just have two hours on Saturday mornings to whip up things like this.

I found this recipe in publication by Organic Style Magazine. It was one one those half-magazine, half cookbooks you find in the checkout aisles of Whole Foods. I have no idea what provoked me to buy it. I’m glad I did, because its pages hold some of my perennial favorites: Moroccan vegetable stew, plum clafoutis, red lentil patties. Blackberry spice cake is on page 144, next to chocolate rice pudding, which I’ve been meaning to try for years.

The only difficult thing about this cake can be dislodging it from the pan. This is why I suggest lining your pan with parchment paper. Otherwise, grease it heavily with vegetable shortening. Don’t use butter or your cake will look like a disaster. It will taste great, but won’t be much to look at.

This is awesome served with a dollop of vanilla yogurt, ice cream, or fresh whipped cream.

Blackberry Spice Cake
slightly adapted from Simple Meals, Organic Style, 2003

2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup whole-milk vanilla yogurt
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 cups whole grain pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 heaping cups blackberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch cake pan with vegetable shortening, or line with lightly oiled parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, oil, and yogurt. Stir in the brown sugar.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, ginger, baking powder, allspice, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt. Form a well in the center and add the yogurt mixture, stirring just until blended. Fold in the blackberries.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes. Run a knife around the inside of the pan and tap it on all sides to loosen. Invert onto a serving plate.

Serves 8


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