Combining stone fruit with berries to create a beautiful blackberry apricot buckle cake topped with toasted hazelnuts. Loaded with fruit with a crunchy exterior and soft texture, this cake makes for a delightful summer dessert.
Blackberry Apricot Buckle Cake
- 1 cup blackberries (6 ounces)
- 3 ripe, semi-firm apricots (130 grams)
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (187 grams)
- ¾ cup granulated sugar (150 grams)
- ½ cup finely ground hazelnut flour (56 grams)
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- pinch of nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup buttermilk (250 ml)
- 1 large egg
- ¼ cup butter (57 grams)
- ⅓ cup chopped hazelnuts (35 grams)
- powdered sugar for dusting
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Slice the apricots in half and each half into 3 wedges for a total of 6 wedges per apricot. If your apricots are small, cut them into quarters instead. Toss the apricots and blackberries with the brown sugar and cinnamon and set aside for 15 minutes.
- Combine the dry ingredients for the cake including the flour, sugar, ground hazelnuts, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
- Whisk together the vanilla, buttermilk, and egg until well combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, stirring just until combined.
- Melt ¼ cup butter in a 10-inch cast iron pan over medium heat. Continue to heat the butter until it turns golden brown and smells nutty, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and pour the cake batter into the center of the pan, letting the butter surround the batter.
- Arrange the fruit on top of the cake and sprinkle the chopped hazelnuts on top. Bake the blackberry apricot buckle for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool and dust with powdered sugar before serving.
Watch how to make this:
For some reason, I have an easier time thinking of dessert recipes versus savory dishes. If you see my list of recipe ideas, 90% of them are desserts. With summer produce in almost full swing, that list of ideas just keeps growing and growing. I'm slowly tackling them one by one (see the last cheesecake post?) and today's agenda is all about this blackberry apricot buckle cake. Loaded with fruit, this cake is studded with hazelnuts and finished with powdered sugar for the perfect summer treat.
What is a buckle cake you ask? Well simply put, it's a fruit cake. The fruit on the top of the cake makes the cake buckle under the weight, hence, buckle cake. You can use a variety of fruits but I decided to use blackberries and apricots because I love the combination.
- Blackberries: I used fresh blackberries but you can also use frozen or substitute them with another berry such as raspberries or blueberries.
- Apricots: This stone fruit has a distinct and unique flavor that can be described as sweet, slightly tart, and subtly floral. Use ripe but still slightly firm apricots for this cake for the best texture.
- Finely ground hazelnut flour: A type of flour made from finely ground hazelnuts. If you can't find hazelnut flour, you can make it yourself. Pulse hazelnuts in a food processor until finely ground but make sure not to overprocess them or they will turn into a paste. You can also substitute it with finely ground almond flour.
- Cinnamon: The spice adds another layer of flavor while complementing the blackberries and apricots.
- Buttermilk: A fermented dairy product, buttermilk helps create a lighter, fluffier cake. If you don't have buttermilk on hand, you can make a substitute by adding a tablespoon of lemon juice to a cup of milk. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes to allow it to curdle before use.
- Hazelnuts: The nuts are sprinkled on top of the cake for a lovely crunchy topping. Use raw hazelnuts as they will bake in the oven.
How to Make Blackberry Apricot Buckle Cake
Step 1: Marinate Fruit
This dessert is fairly easy to prepare. First, slice the semi-firm ripe apricots into wedges and gently toss them with the blackberries, brown sugar, and cinnamon. You want to use semi-firm apricots because if they're too ripe, they'll just turn into mush. However, you also don't want them to be too firm because they'll be too sour.
Let the mixture sit for about 15 minutes to allow the fruits to absorb the sugars.
Step 2: Prepare the Cake
Meanwhile, make the cake batter. Mix the dry ingredients, whisk together the wet ingredients, then add everything together. If you can't find finely ground hazelnut flour, you can substitute it with finely ground almond flour.
Next, melt butter in a cast iron pan and continue to cook it until it turns golden brown and smells nutty. Brown butter is a glorious thing and it just made sense to add it to this cake.
Carefully pour the cake batter into the pan, pouring it in the center so that the butter surrounds the batter. This way the hot butter will create a lovely crust on the cake.
If you don't have a cast-iron pan, you can use any other oven-safe pan. Alternatively, cook the brown butter and pour it into a cake pan. Then, pour the cake batter into the cake pan.
Step 3: Top the Cake and Bake
Place the fruit on top of the cake, pouring in all of those fruit juices along with it. Sprinkle the chopped hazelnuts on top and bake the blackberry apricot buckle cake for about 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Let the cake cool, then sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve. This cake is best served either warm or at room temperature.
If you're looking for a cake loaded with fruit, this is the one for you. The inside of the buckle cake is wonderfully moist from all of the fruit while the outside has a lovely crust from the butter. The crunchy hazelnuts also don't hurt either. A delicious cake if I do say so myself!
Can I use frozen fruit instead of fresh?
Yes, you can! The recipe will work with either fresh or frozen fruit.
What if I'm not a fan of hazelnuts?
You can substitute the hazelnut flour with almond flour and the hazelnuts with almonds. You can also use pecans or walnuts as well.
How long does this cake stay fresh?
Like many cakes, this one is best served on the day it is baked. However, it can last up to 3 days if properly stored in an air-tight container.
For more fruit cake inspiration, check out this blackberry lavender chiffon cake!