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Blueberry Buttermilk Cake (Tessa Kiros)

Blueberry Buttermilk Cake (Tessa Kiros)

It's time for IHCC's Mystery Box Madness Challenge, the first one in 2015! Woohoo!

Modus operandi is the same: we can choose a dish from Diana Henry or any previous ten IHCC chefs. This time round, the chosen dish must contain at least three of these mystery ingredients: potatoes, flour, buttermilk, paprika, onion, leafy greens (any kind), lemon, honey, prawns/shrimp, feta.

I love these ingredients; most of them are readily available in my pantry. The challenge is to find the correct recipe that features three of the selected mystery ingredients from the correct chef.

After a very long selection process, I settle down with Tessa Kiros' Blueberry Buttermilk Cake from her book, Apples For Jam. The three mystery ingredients are: buttermilk, flour, and lemon (lemon zest in this recipe).

I love baking with buttermilk. My previous buttermilk cakes are Nigella Lawson's Buttermilk Cake and Bobby Flay's Buttermilk Cake with Mixed Berries.

Okay, here are my three mysterious ingredients:

Buttermilk Powder (bought from

Bakers' Choice's unbleached all-purpose flour.

Lemon zest (looks more like lemon peel). :S

(Serves 6)

2 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup superfine sugar (I used molasses sugar)
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 cup fresh blueberries
2 & 1/2 tablespoons raw sugar (I used demerara sugar)

How to: 

1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease and flour a 12 by 8-inch pan with sides at least 2 inches high. (I used a bundt pan, not an ideal choice. It's best to use normal round/square cake pan as stated in Tessa's recipe.)

2. Sift flour and baking powder into a large bowl and add sugar. Put eggs in another bowl and whisk until light and fluffy. Add buttermilk, butter, and lemon zest, and beat together well.

3. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix gently with a wooden spoon just until everything is combined. If you beat too hard, the cake will be tough.

4. Spoon the mixture into the pan, spreading it thinly to reach all sides. Scatter blueberries over the top and sprinkle with raw sugar.

5. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick poked into the center of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the pan before cutting.

Molasses sugar gives this cake its lovely golden shade.

Lovely purple blueberry ring.

I'm linking this post with I Heart Cooking Clubs (IHCC) for this week's theme, Mystery Box Madness: January 2015!


Previous Mystery Box Madness recipes:

December 2014: Curried Lentil Soup with Potatoes (Mark Bittman) 

November 2014: Date, Apricot, Chia Seeds Tea Bread (adapted from Diana Henry)


  1. I was hoping someone would bake something and this cake sounds wonderful with its lemon-blueberry flavour! Very nice!

  2. Such a pretty cake! Blueberry and lemon is such a great pairing. Good use of the MBM ingredients. ;-)

  3. Looks amazing! I love buttermilk cakes!

  4. I love that buttermilk powder - so much more convenient!

  5. Lovely cake, Joyce!
    I wish that we can find buttermilk powder locally. I always sub it with a combo of milk and yoghurt.
    Nice MBM ingredients selection!

  6. This is a winning recipe, Joyce! Tessa Kiros was one of my favorite chef/cooks that we worked with at IHCC and I made this recipe when we cooked with her. It is wonderful and moist and we gobbled it up in no time. Looks gorgeous!

    1. Thanks Kim! This is my first trial of Tessa Kiros' recipe. Hope to cook and bake more. :)

      Thanks for the encouragement. :)

  7. Joyce, what a clever choice of ingredients. I like how your cake looks with the lovely hue of blue in it. I'm sure it tastes very moist and yummy. Perfect with a cuppa tea ;)

  8. Blueberry, lemon and buttermilk, sounds like a winning combination, and I love that you came up with a Tessa Kiros recipe for this challenge - I love her food.

  9. How interesting, I never thought of buttermilk powder .. The cake looks delicious