Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Blueberry Crumble Loaf

My activity has been lacking on the blog front since last week, no particular reason just been busy with other things. I had planned to do some baking over the weekend but with Saturday being a dry and sunny day we made the most of it and went for a picnic to Winkworth Arboretum. I bought some lovely blueberries on Sunday that were half price in M&S and decided to incorporate them into this Blueberry Crumble Loaf. The recipe is from The Hummingbird Bakery's new book Cake Days. I find that some of the recipes from both the Hummingbird bakery books have been hit and miss for me. Whilst the loaf ended up coming out looking lovely, as you can see from the pics, it wasn't all plain sailing. I believe the root cause of the troubles started with the recommended size tin being too small for the amount of batter there was. The loaf needed longer in the oven (nearly 30 mins extra) and also caused the batter to over-flow to the edge of the tin but thankfully not resulting in spillage. In spite of everything this loaf turned out wonderful in the end and has a lovely moist sponge with fruity bursts of blueberry and a crunchy crumble topping.

Blueberry Crumble Loaf

Serves 8-10

For the Sponge
190g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
190g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
190g caster sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
25ml whole milk
100g fresh or frozen (and defrosted) blueberries
50g pecans, chopped (I omitted these)

For the Crumble Topping
25g plain flour
10g unsalted butter
15g soft light brown sugar
20g pecans, chopped
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

One 8.5 x 17.5cm (3 1/2 x 7in) loaf tin with 7.5cm (3in) sides

Preheat the oven to 170C/fan 150C/325F/gas mark 3, then grease the loaf tin with butter and dust with flour.

First make the crumble topping. In a bowl, rub the flour and butter together with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the remaining ingredients, and then set aside.

Next make the sponge. Using a hand-held electric whisk or a freestanding electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Break the eggs in one at a time, mixing well, on a medium speed, after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl to make sure every bit of the mixture is incorporated.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and ground cinnamon, then add in three stages to the creamed butter and eggs, pouring in the milk after the second batch has been added. Mix well on a medium speed after each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl once again to ensure all the ingredients are incorporated.

Increase the speed to medium-to-high and continue mixing until the batter is smooth and even, then add the blueberries and chopped pecans, stirring them into the batter by hand and making sure they are evenly distributed. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin and sprinkle the crumble mixture over the top.

Bake in the oven for 50-60 minutes or until the sponge feels firm and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean, with no cake batter sticking to it. Allow the loaf to cool a little before turning it out of the tin on to a wire rack to cool completely, then cut into slices to serve.


Anna's kitchen table said...

That looks so good and summery!

Kate@whatkatebaked said...

I've too had some good, then not so good recipes from the hummingbird book- glad to hear it isn't just me! Thank you for roadtesting this recipe Maria!

Jacqueline Meldrum said...

I would never have known you had any problems. It looks amazing! The blueberries are really well spread through it. It's it funny that we both did a blueberry crumble cake on the same night :)

Arundathi said...

this looks incredible! i so miss your sweet and simple bakes blog! it was something i always looked forward to every month!! :D

Finla said...

Wowo they just look so so perfect.

Gloria Baker said...

marĂ­a, look awesome, I love all with blueberries and the kids love it too! gloria

Chele said...

I too find their recipes are a bit hit and miss but I have to say if you hadn;t of said anything I'd of been none the wiser lol! Looks fab to me, perfect to have for afternoon tea!

LF said...

That looks so yummy! I bought blueberries the other day with baking in mind. Was thinking blueberry scones perhaps but that loaf looks tasty too.

Sorry for very late reply: Bought the book you've been blogging from - weekend baking. Also bought Dan Lepard's Baking Passion and I bought Ottolenghi the Cookbook which has a very tempting baking chapter. I will be trying out recpies soon!

Reeni said...

Such a delectable blueberry loaf, despite your problems! I love the crumble topping!

Choclette said...

Maria, it sounds lovely and the blueberry patches make it look quite scrumptious. Like the contrast of the crunchy topping too. I've heard from several sources that the Hummingbird recipes aren't always quite right for the home baker, but sometimes it's the ideas we need and it sounds like they have plenty of those.

Mandy@Withmilkandflour said...

I love crumble cakes, this looks lovely and summery! said...

I love any recipe with blueberries! I can't wait to try this one out.