I’m deathly afraid of bees. Not deathly allergic, just deathly afraid.
Last weekend we went raspberry picking. I was giddy with excitement after wanting to go for years. We walked up to the friendly stand, picked up our basket, and headed towards the rows of ripe raspberries. I was nearly skipping and picked berries like they were going out of style. And then I heard the buzzing. Not the placid buzzing of a single bee—the drone of many. Nobody told me about this part of berry picking. I looked down at my basket and saw a bee, angry about sharing his raspberries, alit on my hand. Berries went everywhere. Later, I was told that I ran down the row, screaming like a little girl.
I picked up my scattered berries and nervously finished picking, amid threats both real and imagined. My romantic skip had turned into a traumatizing run. I’m pretty sure I accomplished the fastest berry picking extravaganza in the history of berry picking. I’ll probably go back—the allure of fresh raspberries is powerful—but I may need to purchase a bee suit. Or drink a glass of wine beforehand.
Eventually, I’ll need more berries to make another Rustic Raspberry Cake. It’s the perfect cake to usher in autumn. With a complex browned butter and almond flavor, this cake is dense yet charming. It wears a crusty top and hides a moist crumb. And those hard earned raspberries scattered throughout are easily the most savored bites.
Rustic Raspberry Cake
Yields one 11″ tart pan
3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) butter, plus more for pan
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 c. almond flour (this is a great link if you'd like to make your own!)
1 1/2 c. unbleached all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. sea salt
2 large eggs
2 egg yolks
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
3/4 c. raspberries, washed and dried
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly butter the tart pan. Set aside.
2. Add butter to a small sauce pan. Cook on medium to high heat until butter browns, swirling pan occasionally. Set aside to cool.
3. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together sugar, almond flour, flour, baking powder, and salt.
4. Whisk in eggs and extracts to cooled butter.
5. Add butter mixture to flour mixture and stir well until combined. Mixture will be thick.
6. Evenly spread batter in tart pan. Carefully, or not so carefully, place raspberries into the cake. If you happen to drop in a few extras, it’s not such a bad thing.
7. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Cover with foil if browning too quickly. Allow to cool before removing from pan. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Or top with ice cream, whipped cream, or crème fraîche. I’ll let you decide.
Want more recipes? Try these salted dark chocolate Nutella cookies.