As we gear up for summer foraging and fishing, I’ve turned to the freezer to make the most of the final bits — odds and ends, including halibut cheeks, smoked salmon roe, wild berries and more. After making halibut ceviche Cayman-style and grilling the last of the salmon for a yogurt-and-dill-laced salad, I also found some wild Alaska blueberries — smaller and more tart than the conventional ones we get in the store. To change up from my favorite blueberry-cured salmon recipe by Diane Wiese of Cordova, I decided to give the blues some cream cheese and almond love.
The result is a cake that’s both tender and dense. I bake it in a tube or Bundt pan, which I find is a nice compromise between a look-at-me double-decker party cake and an everyday sheet cake. You could, in a pinch, bake this in a 9-x-13-inch pan. It’s good as is, but for a finishing touch, make a quick drizzle with powdered sugar and milk or fresh-squeezed lemon or orange juice; I splurge sometimes and add a hit of vanilla bean paste. Any leftovers can be freshened up by toasting in a skillet. This cake disappeared within a day, but luckily wild blueberry season is just on the horizon.
Blueberry cream cheese Bundt cake
makes 1 (10-inch) Bundt cake or 1 (9-x-13-inch) cake
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
2 3/4 cups sugar (550 g)
6 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice, and zest, if desired
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
3 cups all-purpose flour (420 g)
1 scant cup ground almond meal/almond flour (80 g)
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries or frozen, thawed and drained of liquid (250 g)
Vanilla glaze (optional, see below)
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, preferably sifted
3 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice OR 3 to 4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Thoroughly grease and flour a 10-inch (12 cups) Bundt or tube pan.
2. Combine cream cheese and butter together in the bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer (alternatively use a hand mixer) and blend using paddle attachment until just combined. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add eggs, two at a time, blending after each addition. Add salt, lemon juice, vanilla, salt, and blend until just combined, scraping down sides as needed. Add flour one cup at a time and blend, stopping to scrape down sides, as needed. Add almond meal and blend. Add blueberries and stir until just combined. Fill prepared pan and tap pan on counter so batter evens out.
3. Bake for 65 minutes to an hour and 15 minutes or until tester inserted in center comes out clean. Crust will be a dark golden brown. Cool on a wire rack 15 to 20 minutes. Run a knife along sides of pan and turn cake out onto rack to cool. If using optional glaze, place rack over parchment paper to catch excess drips before pouring glaze. Let cool at least 15 more minutes before slicing.
To make the vanilla glaze: Whisk together powdered sugar and milk or lemon juice. Add vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract and stir until well blended and no lumps remain. Pour over cake.