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Breakfast, brunch or dessert?

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You hit the jackpot when you discover a recipe that can be adapted to more than one meal, whether it is a side dish or a main dish. An omelet, for example, can be built for any time of day. Same goes for pasta, which can always do salad duty, and so on. So when I found another one I was delighted.

This past week I got my summer issue of Cooking Pleasures magazine from the Cooking Club of America. It is filled with reader-contributed dishes, which shows us that Americans are out there using all of our creative and inventive talents--not just on cooking shows. Personally I don't watch the cooking networks much anymore, with their mania for more and more contrived contests. So I loved it when I found this recipe that speaks to my personal love of baking.

It is very nice to have half an hour or so before a guest arrives so that you can make something quickly, and you can serve this Blueberry-Honey-Lemon Upside-Down Cake as a coffee cake or afternoon tea dish right off the bat. Then you can get out your whipped topping and serve it for dessert if that comes up. Or you can serve it with breakfast or brunch. You are going to treasure this recipe!

BLUEBERRY-HONEY-LEMON UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE

From the Cooking Club of America

Ingredients:

Topping:

4 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen (thaw if frozen)

Cake:

1-1/4 cups pastry flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup granulated sugar
1 stick butter, at room temperature
1-1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 Tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a round or square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Place the butter, honey and brown sugar in a small saucepan and bring them to a low boil, combining them thoroughly. Pour this mixture into your baking pan and sprinkle the blueberries over all.

Whisk together the dry ingredients for the cake in a mixing bowl and set them aside.

Beat the butter and sugar until they are light and then beat in the eggs one at a time. Add the other ingredients and then lower your mixer speed to Fold or its lowest setting. Fold in the dry ingredients in thirds, and mix only until you cannot see streaks in the mixture.

Pour the batter over the topping and bake the cake for 45-50 minutes or until the center springs back when touched lightly. Let the cake cool in the pan until it reaches room temperature.

When you are ready to serve, invert the cake to a serving plate to slice. Top with whipped cream or ice cream to dress it up.

If you feel like it, you could also make a classic lemon-cornstarch sauce to top the cake. Here's one:

LEMON SAUCE

Ingredients:

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup boiling water
2 Tablespoons butter
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest

Whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a small saucepan and mix well. Stir in the boiling water gradually and bring to a boil again over medium heat. Stir constantly 5 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter, lemon zest and juice; mix well. Serve warm over the cake slices.

This sauce is a classic when served over warm gingerbread, by the way.

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