Strawberry buttermilk skillet cake with Strawberry-Cointreau Reduction Sauce

4/8/13

Strawberry Buttermilk Skillet Cake with Strawberry-Cointreau Reduction |une gamine dans la cuisine


I can't even begin to tell you how much I love my skillet, Moody Blue! Not only can she flip an omelette with the grace of a Cirque du Soleil acrobat, she also has a sweet spot for procuring tender, fluffy, cakes. Thanks again for introducing us, Averie!

Due to an obnoxiously long winter, and perhaps some too-early expectations on my part, this season's strawberries are still on the tarter end of the spectrum - thankfully, sugar and buttermilk (and Moody Blue!), can take the surly out of just about anything.


Strawberry Buttermilk Skillet Cake with Strawberry-Cointreau Reduction |une gamine dans la cuisine


I think the last skillet cake recipe I shared was the beloved Swedish visiting cake. Apologies. Moody Blue and I are so hooked on breakfast-y food - we sometimes forget about the vast, open world of soft cakes, and sticky tarte tatins.

This cake is a beautiful way to usher in the seemingly timid spring. It's simple, rustic, and whispers softly about warm days spent in fields of green grass, listening to the lazy hum of honeybees. The sauce was more of an afterthought - I had too many strawberries and not enough cake. If you don't have Cointreau (an orange liqueur), feel free to use orange juice instead. The thick, syrupy sauce is a delicious accompaniment to the rather homely cake. (It's also perfectly acceptable to enjoy by the spoonful.)


Strawberry Buttermilk Skillet Cake with Strawberry-Cointreau Reduction |une gamine dans la cuisine


Strawberry Buttermilk Skillet Cake with Strawberry Cointreau Reduction Sauce

for the cake
1 cup granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon lemon zest (about 1-2 lemons)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 egg, room temperature
1/2 cup buttermilk, well shaken and at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure almond extract
9 ounces of fresh strawberries, hulled and cut in half
1 Tablespoon super-fine sugar (granulated will work too)

for the reduction
10-11 ounces of fresh strawberries, chopped {Note: The larger the berry slices, the chunkier your sauce will be - it's completely up to you!}
1/4 cup granulated sugar (feel free to use more if your berries are not very sweet)
1/8 cup of Cointreau
1-2 teaspoons lemon juice

method
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a seasoned 9-inch cast-iron skillet or other heavy ovenproof skillet. {Note: You may also use a 9-inch cake pan.}

Place the sugar and lemon zest into the bowl of your stand mixer. Use your fingertips to rub the zest into the sugar until fragrant and pale yellow; Set the mixture aside to "marinate" for a few minutes.

In a medium size bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt; Set aside.

Add the butter to the lemon-sugar mixture and, using the paddle attachment, beat on medium speed until pale and fluffy - about 5 minutes. {Note: It's okay if the texture looks a bit "sandy."} Add the egg and beat on medium speed for about 1 minute. If needed, scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the almond and beat to combine.

On low speed, add the flour mixture in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk - beginning and ending with the flour mixture.{Note: Try not to over-beat.}

Scrape the batter into prepared skillet (or cake pan, if using).  Use an off-set spatula to spread the batter into an even layer. Arrange the strawberries, cut-side down, on top of the batter. Sprinkle the entire surface with 1 Tablespoon of sugar.

Bake for 45-60 minutes, or until the top of the cake is light golden brown and a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.  Remove the skillet (or cake pan) from the oven and place it onto a cooling rack. Cool completely before serving.

Prepare the reduction sauce: Place the strawberries, sugar, Cointreau, and lemon juice into a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil gentle over med-high heat. Once it starts to boil, reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid turns into a thick syrup and the berries take on a chunky jam-like consistency (about 8-10 minutes). Remove the pan from the heat and allow the sauce to cool. {Note: It will continue to thicken as it cools.}

Serving: Loosen the cake from the skillet by running a thin spatula around the edges. Turn the cake out onto the cooling rack, place a serving plate on top, and gently invert - so the cake is right-side up. Personally I like to serve my skillet cakes directly from the skillet. :) Dollop each slice of cake with desired amount of sauce.

40 comments:

Annie @ Annie's Noms said...

This is beautiful! Strawberries are my absolute favourite berry, in fact my favourite fruit! I'm going to have to buy some strawberries this week and make this :)

Laura (Tutti Dolci) said...

I love that you named your skillet! This cake looks so light and fluffy, I want to enjoy a big slice on a lazy afternoon at the park. Scrumptious!

Jen Laceda | Tartine and Apron Strings said...

Love the blue porcelain plate! Love the Moddy Blue skillet! Ahhh...that's my dream piece of kitchen equipment, so I can make exactly a cake like this! I enjoy visiting cakes 4 seasons out of 4 (hehehe)! there's always a good excuse to indulge in skillet cakes. So homey...and tasty, of course!

Sue/the view from great island said...

This skillet cake is stunning...and I totally agree that the way to enjoy too tart spring strawberries is to bake them into submission!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A delicious cake! Wonderfully seasonal and fruity.

Cheers,

Rosa

The Café Sucré Farine said...

Wow, what a unique strawberry cake, the reduction sauce sounds amazing!

Tracey Wilhelmsen said...

That skillet is gorgeous, I love it!! I'm always looking for new ways to bake with strawberries and this cake sounds wonderful. It shouldn't be too much longer here until I can get my hands on some good ones :)

saucygander said...

Strawberry Cointreau sauce by the spoonful... is this healthy because of the fruit? Love the sound of the strawberry cake.

Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts said...

I will be there later today, hopefully you have some left!

Beth said...

That is one beautiful skillet, and one gorgeous cake. Love it!

Carol | a cup of mascarpone said...

Val, that photo with the sliced piece and the reduction literally makes me want to eat the screen. The cake looks so light, and the reduction so sweet and syrupy...OMG! On another note...after having cast iron pans in the late 70's, I had not had one again until about a year ago...adore it for everything! I've now added the grill pan with the grill iron...boy, does that make a mean grilled cheese. xox

Lisa {Authentic Suburban Gourmet } said...

My mouth is seriously watering! I love that you made a fancy cake in a skillet and with such a posh sauce. This is a winner and a must make. Your photos are simply stunning and captured this cake perfectly.

LuvnSpoonfuls said...

Looks and sounds delish! I had hazelnuts and cherries on the brain, but I think strawberries will do just fine. I'm sure the buttermilk adds some lovely moisture to the cake. Yum! I will have to dust off my cast iron skillet for sure ;-)

www.you-made-that.com said...

That is anything but a homely cake! It is beautiful and the sauce is a lovely treat. Love the photos :)

Danielle Giannandrea said...

This cake looks delicious! I look for any excuse to use my skillet (although mine is not nearly as pretty as yours!: ) Stawberries are also my favorite so I will surely try this cake. The sauce looks so yummy!!!

Danielle

Nickki said...

This cake looks absolutely stunning...and I love your skillet!

Jennie @themessybakerblog said...

It's hard to resist the red beauties, tart or not. This cake looks delicious. Love your new addition!

thelittleloaf said...

That looks so so beautiful - I love the styling in your pics. Strawberry and buttermilk is such a yummy combination.

Savory Simple said...

Amazing. Gorgeous. Delicious. Want.

Kate@Diethood said...

If I could just swim through this monitor...Skillet Cakes are my fave!!! Totally gorgeous!

Dina said...

i love berry buttermilk cakes but never made one in a skillet. sounds great!

Grandbabycakes said...

That cake is so lovely. I love the extra berry sauce on top! So perfect for spring!

Anonymous said...

I think the most difficult part of this cake is that I have to wait for dinner when everyone is here to cut into it! It smells so delicious in the house right now. This really was so simple to put together and it is stunning to look at. I didn't make the reduction sauce this time but maybe next time.

vanillasugarblog said...

Love my girl Averie!!
And you, I admire you for using Cointreau!
il est si bon!!!!

Elena said...

I like strawberries! You are so talented.

Suzanne Perazzini said...

Sometimes we get a piece of kitchen equipment and fall in love with it and I can see why with this skillet. For me it was my mini food processor. I don't know how I managed before I got it.

Patty Price said...

Now I'm looking forward to strawberries!!!
Beautiful skillet cake-you've made it look so elegant with your dishes and the delicious sauce;-)

Jessica Dasilva said...

I must say that you and moody blue make such beautiful skillet cakes. I absolutely adore that sauce, I bet it just takes it over the top! Beautiful!

Gina Stanley said...

Lucky you for having Moody Blue in your life. I have an old skillet friend who I have been reluctant to part with, but I'm pretty sure our friendship is about over. Never pass up the chance to add Cointreau to anything, lol. The first strawberries here are a bit tart too, but soon the good ones are coming and I will need something to try them in.
-Gina-

Erin Dee said...

Whoa, what a classy cake! I mean... really. Fancy. :D

And I love it! It's beautiful and I love that there's booze involved.

And you named your skillet?! You're neat. :)

Anna {Hidden Ponies} said...

Long winters are far from obnoxious in my books, as you know. However, I can forgive such slander due to the gorgeousness of this recipe and Moody Blue :) Looove your photos too!

Rosie @ Blueberry Kitchen said...

Your cake looks so delicious and strawberry cointreau sauce - Yum!!

Lauren at Keep It Sweet said...

My "meh" strawberries would be so much better in the form of this cake!

Cake Duchess said...

Moody Blue-super cool. Love the blues in general in your styling. Lovely cake that I could eat over and over again:)

Roxana | Roxana's Home Baking said...

I love the name of your skillet. It fits it perfectly!
Can't wait to go picking some strawberries. So many recipes I want to try this summer, including this gorgeous cake!

Laura said...

Super yummy! Gorgeous!

Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet said...

This cake is fabulous, Valerie! So excited for the strawberry season! :) You skillet is gorgeous!

Jenn Kendall said...

i am in love with the name moody blue :) i keep meaning to pick up some buttermilk, there are about a bazillion things i'd like to make with it, and this is at the top of the list!

Chelsea Marrs said...

Annnnnd now I simply must buy a skillet.

Hope you can stop by my food blog & drop your two cents! :D http://chowdownbythebay.blogspot.com/

Lemons and Anchovies said...

This is just too pretty to eat--okay, I'd eat it anyway. Wouldn't be able to resist. :)

 

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