Monday, January 16, 2012

snowy day jam cake

Using up the preserves that sound so amazing in summer, isn't always as easy as I think it will be come winter. After a while all that spreading on toast and biscuits gets to be a bit boring. I always imagine while I sweat over a boiling stove in the middle of summer, how each jar will be like a slice of sunshine in the dreary days of winter.

And it usually is almost exactly like that. But sometimes, I want something a little more.

Which is how I happened upon jam cake. I wanted a coffee cake. But I also wanted to use a jar of sour cherry jam that had been hanging around very patiently in my pantry. I found this recipe over at framed cooks and figured I could easily adapt it to what I wanted.

While pulling out the ingredients, I remembered an open jar of black forest jam (which is cherry and chocolate) in the fridge. Um, perfect.

I wasn't sure I liked it at first. But then I had 3 pieces in about an hour (shhhh!)

I think the recipe could still use some tweaking. I'd definitely add a splash of vanilla or almond extract to the wet ingredients - and while I considered adding cinnamon to the topping this time, I didn't - and next time I definitely would.

Also, more jam. I used a full (1/2 pint) jar of sour cherry and 3/4 jar of black forest and they just didn't shine through the cake at all. It's yummy, for sure - but the cake overpowered the jam. I also made mine in an 8x8 dish, so a larger dish (thinner cake) would probably help.

I will absolutely make it again. In fact, I've already decided that next time I will use blueberry maple walnut conserve and blueberry jam - with extra cinnamon and sugar in the cake and cinnamon. sugar and crushed walnuts in the topping. I'm pretty sure it is going to be divine.

Jam Cake

2 cups whole wheat white flour
1/2 cup raw sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup butter
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup milk (I used coconut- and now that I'm thinking of it I recall only using 1/3 cup milk . . .?)
1/2 cup sour cherry jam
1/2 cup black forest preserves. 


1/3 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
3 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter

1. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter to make fine crumbs (I used a processor)
2. Add egg and milk; stir just until dry ingredients are moistened.
3. Spoon batter into a generously buttered 8x8 square pan. Spoon both jams over the batter, then swirl through the batter with a knife. If I was to do the cherry and black forest mix again, I might add some powdered cocoa here too. 
4. Mix topping ingredients until crumbly and sprinkle evenly over batter.
5. Bake at 400° for 25 to 30 minutes, until done. Tastes best warm.

um, it looks better than this is person. I took like 10 pictures and this is the best of the bunch :/

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