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Citrus Shortcake

In my mind, this cake is sort of a blank slate. The cornmeal gives it a little crunch but it is quite versatile. I drizzled a citrus icing on it this time around. I think there are many other things that you could do. You could macerate some berries in sugar and top the cake with them. I think some heated jam (orange, strawberry, or raspberry) drizzled over would be nice. I scoop of ice cream never hurt anyone. A dollop of whip cream never did either. I think you get the idea.

Citrus Shortcake (Adapted from Cooking Light circa 2010)

3/4 c sugar
1/4 cup butter
2 eggs
1 T orange rind, grated
2T fresh OJ
1/2 t vanilla
1 c flour
2T cornmeal
3/4 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
2/3 c buttermilk

Grease a 9" square pan set aside. Cream butter and sugar for 5 minutes in a mixer.  Meanwhile, combine dry ingredients (flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl). Set aside. Add eggs one a time to butter mixture; beating well after each addition. Add grated orange rind, OJ, and vanilla. Mix well. Alternating between flour mixture and buttermilk, add gradually to butter mixture - ending on flour. Pour batter into greased pan. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes in pan on rack. Turn cake out of pan and cool completely before serving. 

This cake comes together quite quickly and has a relatively short bake time. I think it makes the ideal summer cake for these reasons. Most of the ingredients you usually have on hand. If you don't have the buttermilk, I see no reason why yogurt or sour cream couldn't fill in. Or you could also do the milk with a little acid to "make buttermilk" thing. If you are missing the orange, lemon or lime would do nicely too. 


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