it had been my birthday, and i have this friend phil who is a wonderful and thoughtful gift giver. phil had seen a newfangled silicone bundt pan in the ‘ny times style magazine’ a few months back, and lucky for me, he ripped out the page – which he then thoughtfully tucked into the box.
the concept is quite simple, that the slices are pre-defined into 4 sizes – which in turn creates an architectural looking cake. a thing of total beauty that incorporates both form AND function. dear readers, let me explain… this to me is huge. this rings my chimes and floats my boat and just generally makes me very happy. because i so appreciate the brilliance. i mean people… don’t you love this? because i love this. those damn germans can design the hell out of anything…
so on my first go around, which fell on a hot summer’s day, i made a classic blueberry lemon cake, because why wouldn’t i?
blueberry lemon cake
2 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
the zest of 3 lemons
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/2 cup milk
preheat oven to 350F
butter a bundt pan and then dust with flour, shaking out excess
mix 2 1/4 cups flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. set aside.
in another bowl, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
beat in eggs one at a time, then add lemon zest
as you stir, add half the flour mixture, then milk, then remaining flour mixture
toss blueberries in remaining 1/4 cup flour
(dredging fruit keeps it suspended in cake batter and prevents it from sinking during baking)
fold blueberries into batter and pour into bundt pan
bake for about 50 – 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean
let cake cool in pan for 15 minutes, and turn onto a wire rack
dust with powdered sugar when cool
it’s a truly wonderful cake that i think you should all make this weekend, ok? just do it. go on. you will be so glad that you did. honestly, it’s not too sweet or too heavy – it’s just a simple summer cake of fresh local blueberries brightened by the lemon zest, and well, it was just right. i served it with some ‘boulder sweet cream’ ice cream that i picked up at whole foods. it’s a ‘no flavor’ flavor that tastes like the very best frozen whipped cream – except it’s in ice cream form and well, i didn’t want even vanilla messing with my cake. so i was overly excited to see it sitting there in the freezer case. my eyes actually lit up when i saw it – but i’m excitable like that.
and yes of course, i’m sure any bundt pan will do.
but not for me…
and now dear readers, a few bundt facts just for you
(because wikipedia exists and therefore i can…)
A Bundt cake is the name used for a dessert cake cooked in a Bundt pan, whose identifying attribute is its ringed shape. The Bundt pan (a registered trademark) was created in 1950 by H. David Dalquist, founder of Nordic Ware, at the request of members of the Hadassah Society’s chapter in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They were interested in a pan that could be used to make bundkuchen (sometimes called kugelhopf or Gugelhupf), a popular German and Austrian coffee cake. The old-world pans, with fluted and grooved sides, made of delicate ceramic or heavy cast iron, were difficult to use. He modified some existing Scandinavian pan designs and fashioned the pan out of aluminum.
The pan sold somewhat slowly until a Pillsbury-sponsored baking contest in 1966 saw a Bundt cake win second place. This prompted a scramble for the pans, causing them to become the most-sold pan in the United States soon after. Since introduction, more than 50 million Bundt pans have been sold by the Nordic Ware company.
Pillsbury licensed the name in 1970 for a line of cake mixes.
In early 2007 some of the original Bundt pans were taken into the Smithsonian Institute’s collection.
National Bundt Pan day is November 15.