This is my happy place. Carova Beach, Outer Banks, NC. Once a year I get to be here with the best company for two weeks of laughter, play, sun, salt, relaxation, sandy doggies and lots of good cooking. Oh, and it also involves my birthday, so cake and fancy drinks are always part of the shenanigans.
My 23rd birthday cake to celebrate this new year of life: a blueberry cornmeal cake with lemon curd – neufchâtel frosting. I thought up the flavor combination when blueberry season was just beginning and had been craving it ever since. So when the day came, I handed the special job over to my boyfriend and supervised carefully to make sure he made it exactly how I imagined :) He did great, topping it off with a decorative blueberry swirl. Thanks Forrest!
*Note: my birthday was in July; I am just now realizing I never got to posting this cake recipe which needs to be preserved forever and ever. And I’m reminiscing of those wonderful two weeks at the beach. Summer, don’t go so fast!
Blueberry cornmeal cake with lemon curd–neufchâtel frosting, adapted from vanilla & spice
- 1 1/2 cups milk (soy, almond, cow, coconut…)
- 1 T apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 cup organic cornmeal
- 2 t baking powder
- 1/2 t baking soda
- 1/2 t salt
- 1/2 cup cane sugar (or coconut palm sugar)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 cup blueberries
- 4 oz neufchatel cheese
- ~ ½ cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup lemon curd
- milk if necessary
Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 9 inch cake pan with cooking spray (I used a glass pie dish). Stir together the milk and apple cider vinegar and let sit for at least 5 minutes.
The resulting cake was just as I imagined (or better)! Moist, not overly sweet, like a lighter, cakey-er cornbread, with a creamy and tangy frosting. Perfect the next morning with my coffee, too.
Spending time in this happy place of mine is always a great way to conclude a year and send me off revitalized into the next one. And so far so good for year 23. I have so much to be grateful for and so much to look forward to these next 12 months….
And then I’ll be back again to celebrate number 24, Carova Beach!