The raspberry season is here! Where some folks brake for yard sales, I’m constantly scouting for hand-lettered signs and coolers with “fresh raspberries for sale.” Such a premium, luscious fruit with a very short season!
The best way to enjoy fresh Maine raspberries is to pick them yourself. Raspberries have a fragile shelf life, and are destined to be enjoyed quickly. At our family homestead in Norway, my grandmother had a bountiful raspberry patch in the old barn cellar that she fiercely guarded and allowed us to pick for batches of raspberry jam and raspberry pies.
In Bangor, I planted a row of thorny plants along the picket fence in our back yard. Our children loved to pick a handful each morning for their cereal. Here in Stonington, our neighbors at Barbour Farm have a tiny wild raspberry patch that yields just enough for snacking, if we get there before the birds.
If you are fortunate to have a bumper crop, raspberries freeze extremely well. Layer them on a cookie sheet, freeze, and then pour into zip-loc bags. Enjoy them straight from the freezer in smoothies, on cereal or bake into your favorite pie.
My latest culinary creation is Raspberry Streusel Coffee Cake. This melt-in-your-mouth cake uses honey instead of sugar, and the addition of whole-wheat flour increases the fiber and nutritional benefits. By using a prepared granola for the streusel topping, this cake can be on the table in an hour. Be sure to enjoy the luxury of fresh raspberries while you can!
Raspberry Streusel Coffee Cake
- 3/4 cup room temperature butter
- 2/3 cup honey
- 2 large eggs (we use duck eggs)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 1/2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour (May substitute 1-cup whole wheat flour and 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2/3 cup yogurt
- 2 cups raspberries, dusted with 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/2 cup granola (we like Maine Maple Granola)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 10 by 8 inch glass pan.
- In the bowl of your electric mixer, cream together the butter and honey. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and yogurt, and mix to combine. It is not necessary to beat the batter. Dust the raspberries with some flour, and gently fold them into the batter. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the granola over the top. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 40 pans. Cool the cake on rack. Cut into slices and serve. Makes 15 servings.
- For dessert, top with ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.