Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

In my beach fantasy, I wake up early before the rest of the house, make a pot of coffee and start baking. Everyone wakes up to the aroma of the delicious goodies I whipped up. This idyllic scene is repeated every day in that dreamy world.

In reality, we stay up too late, the bed is too cozy and the coffee is already made by some kind soul by the time I wander downstairs. But despite my sloth, I did throw together a coffee cake for breakfast brunch one morning. I guess croissants will live only in my fantasy world.

My faithful companion, Fannie Farmer (aka Marion Cunningham), accompanied me to the beach and inspired me to make this Blueberry Coffee Cake. It’s quick to make and quick to disappear.

Blueberry Coffee Cake


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (1/2 stick)
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup milk – I used 2%
  • 1-1/2 cups blueberries

Streusel topping:

  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour an 8” square pan. 

Add butter and sugar to a bowl and beat until thoroughly blended. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. In another bowl, add flour, baking powder and salt and mix well. Add dry ingredients to the butter/sugar mixture along with the milk. Beat until the batter is smooth. Spread evenly in the prepared pan and sprinkle the blueberries evenly over the top.

For the streusel, add flour, butter, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg to a bowl or food processor — I use a food processor, it’s much quicker. Work them together with your fingertips or a pastry blender, or use the pulse function of the processor, until you have a mixture of light, dry crumbs. Spread over the berries. Bake 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Watch the time, I didn’t have a toothpick, was relying on a knife and overcooked it just a bit. This recipe doubles easily. Seriously consider that.

Serve warm from the pan and get a piece while you can.

2 thoughts on “Blueberry Coffee Cake

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