This morning I had a hankering for something blueberry. I have all these wonderful, fresh blueberries from the market and wanted to make a sweet dessert with my kids, mostly to pass the time on this warm, summer day. The first treat that came to mind was my dairy, egg and nut free Blueberry Buckle. What’s a buckle, you might ask? It’s really a fancy word for a coffee cake, but if you look back in old cookbooks they’ll tell you the name is derived from how the dessert is baked: a rich cake with a single layer of berries, topped with a crumb mixture. The “buckle” is the uneven appearance of the top after it has baked in the oven.
This little homey dessert is a true slice of heaven, for so many reasons. For starters, it is super simple to make with your kids. My 4 year old Matthew poured all the ingredients into the bowl and helped me mix. After I poured the thick batter in a 9 inch square dish, my soon to be 3 year old David sprinkled the blueberries all over the batter. After cutting in dairy free margarine into a cinnamon, sugar and flour mixture, the boys helped sprinkle the crumb topping over the layer of blueberries. They loved using their hands to assemble the buckle, and I love that they are enjoying a sensory rich tactile activity too.
This dessert is incredible warm from the oven, either alone or with a scoop of dairy free ice cream. I think it is just as fabulous for breakfast as it is for a dessert after an afternoon picnic. The next time you have a pint of blueberries, make this little gem with your kiddos. I can promise they will love making it almost as much as they will love eating it!
This is another excuse for me to serve vanilla soy ice cream with a yummy cake. It is a simple cake loaded with fresh fruit and topped with a crunchy streusel topping. You could substitute another fruit for the blueberries if you wish.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9 inch baking dish with dairy free baking spray.
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream shortening and ½ c. of the sugar until light and fluffy. Add water and mix until combined.
In a medium bowl combine 2 c. of the flour, baking powder and salt with a wire whisk. Add flour mixture to shortening mixture and mix alternatively with soy milk. Pour batter into prepared dish.
Combine the lemon juice, zest and blueberries in a small bowl. Sprinkle evenly over batter in dish and top with crumb topping (See below). Bake 50-60 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean. Serve warm with soy ice cream.
Mix remaining ½ c. flour, ½ c. sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Cut in ¼ c. dairy free margarine with your fingers and sprinkle over berries.
Yield: 1 cake