Every August I head down into the valley behind our property here in Umbria to check out the wild blackberries which grown all along the road. Depending on weather conditions, some years they may ripen earlier than others, but they are delicious when fully ripe, and I always pick a couple of bowls full each year to use in my kitchen.
This week the blackberries have finally ripened and despite the heat I went foraging for my berries a few days ago, and came home with a big bag full. Wild blackberries are smaller than the ones you buy in the stores, but they have a tart flavor that works really well in baked goods.
I decided to bake an easy snack cake that would pack well for school lunches since September is right around the corner. It is difficult for me to believe, but we are almost into fall already and everyone will be back on their normal schedules of school, work etc. and thinking about packing those lunches once again. Cakes like this one are great to cut into squares, pack well, and although I used blackberries in my version, any berry would work just as well, even frozen.
- 6 Tablespoons Melted Butter
- 1 Cup Oat Flour
- 1/2 Cup Dark Brown Sugar
- Pinch of Salt
- 1/2 Cup Chopped Toasted Hazelnuts
- 1/2 Cup Butter At Room Temperature
- 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
- 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 2 Large Eggs
- 3/4 Cup All-Purpose Flour
- Pinch of Salt
- 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
- 10 Ounces Blackberries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Grease an 8 inch square cake pan and line the bottom with strips of parchment paper.
- In a bowl, mix together the topping ingredients with your fingers until crumbly.
- In a separate bowl, beat the 1/2 cup butter with the powdered sugar until light.
- Add the vanilla, then the eggs one at a time, beating well between each.
- Mix together the flour, salt and baking powder and add to the butter mixture and beat on low speed just until mixed.
- Spread the cake batter into the prepared pan, then top with the berries.
- Sprinkle the topping over the berries and bake for about 40 minutes.
- Cool completely then use the parchment paper to lift the bars out of the pan.
- Cut into squares and serve.