I don't know how I've gone my whole life without eating a buckle. We've all been sorely missing out. This genius invention is a coffee cake-fruit crisp hybrid that's so heavy and delicious it folds in on itself or "buckles", and it's my new favorite baked good involving fruit. I found the buckle while searching through my cookbooks trying to figure out exactly what to do with the green gooseberries and red currants in my fridge. My amazing friend Eunice gave them to me from her CSA because they're somewhat unusual in the US but super common in Sweden and happen to be something I grew up with. Both of these berries are super tart and generally not best eaten raw or plain because of that tartness. In Sweden a lot of people make compotes or syrups out of them but that requires way more berries than anyone without a gooseberry or currant bush would ever have access to.
So I turned to one of my new favorite cookbooks, Sweeter Off the Vine by Yossy Arefi. I've talked about this book before so I don't need to go into detail, but I am once again grateful to it for introducing me to a new recipe and this time a new form of dessert. Yossy's recipe specifically calls for currants and gooseberries but recommends you use any tart berries available. I personally think this cake would be heaven with blueberries, raspberries and blackberries too. If you're anything like my dad, who is the world's biggest whipped cream fan, whip up some unsweetened heavy cream to go with it.
Recipe from Sweeter Off the Vine
Makes one 9-inch cake
For the Crisp Topping:
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cubed
For the Cake:
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup nonfat yogurt or sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
- 2 1/2 cups mixed berries
Preheat oven to 350F. Line the bottom of a 9-inch cake pan or springform pan with parchment paper. Grease the parchment and sides of the pan and flour.
Make the topping: In a mixing bowl, combine flour, almonds, sugar, and salt. Using a pastry cutter or your hands, cut or rub the butter into the flour mixture until only pea-sized chunks remain. Set aside.
Make the cake: In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar on high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Lower speed to medium and mix in lemon zest and eggs, one at a time. Beat in yogurt, vanilla, and almond extract until evenly incorporated. Add flour mixture all at once and beat on low until just combined.
Assemble: Spread 2/3 of the cake batter across the bottom of the pan and sprinkle with half the berries. Top with the remaining cake batter and then remaining berries. Sprinkle topping over berries and bake in oven until browned and a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean, about 50-60 minutes.