All day, the cats have been curled up sleeping their way into the new year. New Years in Phoenix started out with a chill, grey morning. Even now, well into the afternoon, the sunlight does a poor job a warming up outside. Given this weather, I don’t blame the cats. In fact, I’m all for joining them.
I’m starting this year out simply: cleaning the house, catching up on reading, and baking straight forward, uncomplicated goodies for you to try at home. And I’m working on keeping the new year simple. Last year, Casey and I made pretty straight forward resolutions: easy to keep, easy to remember. This year, as is very much en vouge, I’m forgoing resolutions and focusing on goals.
Goal 1: Improve my German
Born in Heidelberg, I’ve often said that German was truly my first language. Currently out of practice, and also very uncertain of my own skill, I don’t speak much, even to friends at work who try to encourage me. For Christmas, Casey and I found an excellent deal on Rosetta Stone. So what’s the goal: 3 times a week, I’ll complete at least two modules.
Goal 2: Become unconsumed by the internet
Now that might be a funny statement for a gal who blogs and online video games. The spirit of this goal is to not decrease blogging or video gaming, but rather to do these activities and also spend time on the internet mindfully. How am I going to get there? In small doses, and my changing my week night behaviors.
Goal 3: Date my husband
Look, this isn’t a lifestyle blog, so I won’t be posting about all the mushy stuff, but over the past month, Casey and I have had an incredible time! We went on a little vacation, we started hiking together again (thank you cooler weather), and we started changing up our routine. Last night, we watched a movie together to ring in the new year. It’s not earth shattering nor rocket scientist IQ requiring: spend time engaging with each other. Video games do not count.
And now the cake…
Cranberry, Blueberry Buttermilk Cake, adapted from une gamine dans la cuisine
- 1 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 TBS for sprinkling
- 1 TBS citrus zest (I used a combination of orange and lime)
- 3/4 cup cranberries (fresh or frozen)
- 3/4 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 2 cups flour, plus 1-2 TBS for coating the fruit
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick of unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1 egg, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup of buttermilk
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Prep a 9 inch springform pan with butter or preferred grease.
Combine together the sugar and citrus zest in the bowl of stand mixer. Use either your fingers or a fork to rub the zest and sugar together. Beat in the butter for about 3-5 minutes on high, until the butter and sugar are incorporated and creamy. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Combine together the flour, salt, and baking powder.
In a separate bowl, mix together the fruit and 1 TBS of flour. This will help the fruit from sinking straight to the bottom of the pan.
Once the sugar and butter have been incorporated, slowly add the flour and the buttermilk, alternating between both of them. Combine, but don’t over mix.
Slowly mix in the berries. Pour and scrape the batter into the prepared springform pan. Sprinkle the top with sugar.
Bake for 40-55 minutes. Mine was done closer to 55, but start checking at 40, as all ovens are different.
Cool for 30 minutes before serving. Also good the next morning with a splash of cream and a cup of coffee.
*if you don’t have a springform, use a 9 inch cake pan, well buttered. Consider using a parchment paper round in the bottom of the pan.