Everyone needs a break now and then. I am not just talking about a small 15-minute walk around the block brake, I am talking about a break from life. Ok, yes, those 15-minute walks are important – after what I experienced this week, sometimes you just need to get a little air. The problem is that you have to come to that conclusion yourself – no one can tell you that it has to be done. But believe me, it is amazing what it can do for you…
To say that things are hectic right now is an understatement. Thursday was the last day of school for the year, although this year it was a little bittersweet. For my younger daughter, it was a big party – but for my older daughter it was not the usual feeling. Unfortunately I had an all-day meeting, and was extremely preoccupied – all my brain cells were focused at the time. That was until I got the text. The last day was fun, except for the end – everyone was crying, even the boys. Getting that text was heart breaking. Later I found out the teachers were crying too. All because the school board decided to split these kids up. I won’t get into it again, because I can no longer dwell on this horrible decision. This summer I am working on an attitude adjustment – I am going to have a positive outlook on my daughter’s new school – and so will she. We agreed to it.
So as I sat there in that meeting, thinking about my daughter – it hit me, I was not the only one with a life outside that room. Life is hard – and most of the time, you really have no idea how hard it is – particularly for everyone else. Fortunately for me, I can always turn to food – and that’s exactly what I did this weekend. I didn’t just dabble – I was hard core – I was on a power cooking/baking frenzy, trying to get all my stress out in the kitchen. I actually think it worked…or I am just utterly exhausted.
This was just one of the many things going on in my kitchen – a good old fashioned blueberry coffeecake. Now, I have a favorite recipe from my mother – that just happens to be dairy-free. I just had to see though if this dairy version from Cooking Light was better – and you know what, it wasn’t. Don’t get me wrong, this was absolutely moist and delicious – but I actually like my mother’s recipe better – ok, who is really surprised by that? Yes, my mother tests her recipes more than anyone else I know. And Mom, you win again.
So I hope that I was not the only one that was able to take a break this weekend – in whatever form that is. Even if you just took a few deep breaths…I know it will help. Monday, I am ready for you – bring it on.
- 9 ounces unbleached all-purpose flour (about 2 cups)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
- 1 tablespoon unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup nonfat buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- Cooking spray
Preheat oven to 375°.
Weigh or lightly spoon 9 ounces flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 9 ounces flour and next 3 ingredients (through salt), stirring with a whisk. Remove 2 tablespoons flour mixture; sprinkle over blueberries, tossing to coat.
Combine brown sugar and next 4 ingredients (through cinnamon) in a medium bowl. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons melted butter; toss to combine.
Place granulated sugar, 1/4 cup butter, and oil in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended (about 2 minutes). Add egg; beat well. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix after each addition. Stir in rind and juice.
Spoon half of batter into a 9-inch square light-colored metal baking pan coated with cooking spray (do not use a dark or nonstick pan). Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup blueberry mixture. Spoon remaining batter over blueberries. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 cup blueberry mixture. Sprinkle with brown sugar mixture. Bake at 375° for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on a wire rack.
For a printer-friendly version of this recipe, please click here: Blueberry Coffeecake with Streusel