Tender sour cream pound cake swirled with fresh macerated blueberries and a tart cheesecake. Want a slice?
I’ve been shooting with artificial light. I’ve been going through a bout of… Of… ‘Ugh, I don’t want to cook or bake for this blog-itis.’ I noticed it around November when the sun sets early and 4 PM feels like midnight. It’s not you, it’s me. About one hour before sunset I come to my senses. I jump from my semi-catatonic weekend state in a panic and attempt to make and photograph something before darkness sets in. Of course, it never works. By the time I get around to setting things up, it’s darker than midnight. Seriously, what the hell is up with that? As a result, I’ve been using artificial lighting. Which I’m not 100% behind.
- a) Natural light is the shit.
- b) I moved some furniture around and that screwed with my lighting Feng Shui. I haven’t figured out how to make it right again.
For now, I’m creating content. Right now, some of my pictures will look like crap.
Now flow with me, let’s talk about this Blueberry Cheesecake Swirl Bundt Cake. Dude, I love me a good Bundt cake. Bundt cakes are a one pan situation. No layering or frosting. Not that I’m against layering or frosting. I’m not. It’s just, the ease of bundt cakes free up my time for catatonic drooling on the couch. That’s as lit as I get sometimes and I’m OK with it.
This cake situation. It starts with sweetened blueberries. I like to say macerated; however, the fruit never really breaks down. But fuck it – Let’s call them macerated. The blueberries are mixed with vanilla bean paste, sugar, and lemon zest. They’re allowed to hang in a bowl. The sugar gets all syrupy and whatnot.
A quick cheesecake filling, heavy on the vanilla bean.
A sour cream pound cake, tender AF no matter what you do to it.
A little flour is mixed in with the blueberries. Pro tip: This prevents blueberries from sinking to the bottom. It happens. More than you know.
Half the batter is poured into a buttered and floured bundt pan. Spoonfuls of cheesecake filling are dotted over the batter and swirled. Blueberries are placed right over the cheesecake and topped with cake batter. Then you repeat and bake. The batter rises in the heat almost covering the blueberries.
Once the cake is cooled its inverted and an icing, heavy on the lemon juice and vanilla – Is poured over the cooled cake.
I never doubted this would work. I mean – Cake, cream cheese, and lemon scented blueberries in one slice? Come on! The blueberries stayed put as I knew they would. You cannot see the cream cheese filling. All you have to do is bite into the cake to know it’s there.
Its presence, unmistakable. Tart, sweet, creamy. The blueberries give a fruity tartness and the tenderness of the cake is where it’s at.
A slice of this. And back to my catatonic state I go.
For the macerated berries
- 1 ½ cups Blueberries
- 2 tablespoons Granulated sugar
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 ½ tablespoon Vanilla bean paste
- 2 tablespoons All-purpose flour
For the cream cheese swirl
- 1 8 ounce package Cream cheese, room temperature –
- ½ cup Granulated sugar
- 1 ½ tablespoon Vanilla bean paste
For the cake
- 3 cups spooned then leveled All-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon Baking powder
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 cup 2 sticks Unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 ½ cups Granulated sugar
- 1 cup Sour cream
- 1 ½ tablespoon Vanilla bean paste
- 3 tablespoons Heavy cream
- 6, at room temperature Eggs large
For the Icing
- 1 ¼ cup Confectioners’ powdered sugar
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon Vanilla bean paste
- 1-2 tablespoons Heavy cream
Macerate the blueberries
- Set aside the flour in a small bowl. You won’t use it until the cake is ready to bake. In a medium bowl, combine the blueberries, granulated sugar, and lemon zest. Mix to combine and set aside for about 30 minutes until the sugar dissolves and becomes somewhat syrupy.
Make the cream cheese swirl:
- Place the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla bean paste in a medium bowl. Mix with a hand mixer or a fork until very smooth. Set aside until ready to use.
Bake the blueberry cream cheese swirl cake:
- Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit and place oven rack in middle of the oven. Butter and flour a 10-cup Bundt cake pan. Shake the excess flour and set aside.
- In a large bowl combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy over medium/high speed, about 3 minutes. Stop and scrape the mixer and add the sour cream, followed heavy cream and vanilla bean paste. Turn the mixer on and beat over medium speed until combined. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stop and scrape the mixer once more. Turn the mixer onto low speed and add the flour. Mix until just combined, no longer than 45 seconds.
- Remove bowl from the mixer and give the batter a couple of folds, making sure you scrape the sides of the pan. Pour about 1/2 of the pound cake batter into the Bundt cake pan. Bang it a couple of time on your counter to even out the batter. Grab the macerated blueberries and mix in the flour you set aside earlier. This prevents the blueberries from sinking to the bottom. Dollop half the cream cheese mixture around the cake batter and swirl with a knife. Doesn’t have to be neat. Add half the blueberries over the cream cheese. Pour remaining batter over the blueberries. Repeat the cream cheese and blueberry mixture. Push the blueberries into the cake batter slightly.
- Place the Bundt pan in the oven and bake for about 50-63 minutes until an inserted bamboo skewer or knife inserted in several places comes out clean. Please note, the cream cheese may trick you into thinking the cake isn’t ready, so please be sure to test in several places before removing cake from the oven.
- NOTE: I wouldn’t trust the toothpick test here, as a toothpick isn’t long enough to penetrate the pan fully.
- Remove pan from the oven. Allow the cake to cool out of the oven for about 3 minutes or so, then gently run a knife over the edges and slowly pulling towards you to loosen the cake from the batter. Be as gentle as possible. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for another 5-10 minutes, then carefully invert in a wire rack to cool completely. While the cake is cooling slightly, make the icing.
Make the icing:
- In a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment (a hand mixer rocks here too), combine the confectioners’ sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla bean paste. Whisk until combined. Add the heavy cream one tablespoon at a time and mix until heavy cream is combined. Check icing for consistency. Add more confectioners’ sugar for a thicker icing or more lemon juice for thinner icing. Pour icing over the cake while it is still slightly warm. Allow the cake to cool completely then slice into that bad boy with abandon.
NOTE: Baking times do vary by altitude and climate, which is why I suggest after the suggested baking time of 50 minutes you check every 3-5 minutes to ensure the cake has baked through. Mine usually bakes at 53 minutes, but in other climates baking times can extend as long as 80 minutes.
- Bundt cake adapted from: Creme de la Crumb