I was first introduced to fromage blanc at culinary school. It sounds so fancy, doesn’t it? Before anyone gets all huffy with me for using fussy ingredients, I’ll let you in on a little secret. Fromage blanc is basically French yogurt. This is yogurt cake. And you know what else? It’s really easy to make. No stand mixer required.
Am I weird for wanting to make fromage blanc cake instead of yogurt cake? Yes, but I like to make fancy sounding food. Do you remember that old Rice Krispies commercial where the mom wanted her family to think she was slaving away all day in the kitchen but she was actually reading a book and eating Rice Krispie treats? And then she dusted her face with flour and made a pathetic face before bringing her family the treats? That’s kind of what I’m doing here.
You can use yogurt if you prefer. Fromage blanc can be found at most grocery stores near the cheese section (I typically use the brand Vermont Creamy). But you will never make an easier cake. You basically just whisk the ingredients together, pour the batter into a loaf pan and bake it. The taste and texture is very similar to pound cake but with a bit more texture from the almonds.
I cooked down blueberries to make the berry compote (use whichever berry you like) but you can even skip this step and just serve the cake with whipped cream and fresh berries. But don’t tell anyone it’s easy. Make them think you slaved away all day in your kitchen. Just because.
- 5 ounces (1 cup) all purpose flour
- 2½ ounces (1/2 cup) almond meal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- pinch of kosher salt
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- grated zest from 1 lemon
- ½ cup fromage blanc (or plain yogurt)
- 3 large eggs
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 pint berries (see note)
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x5 loaf pan and place it on a baking sheet.
- In medium bowl, whisk together the flour, almond meal, baking powder and salt.
- Add the sugar and zest to a large bowl and briefly rub the ingredients together between your fingers until aromatic. Add the fromage blanc, eggs and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Continue whisking and add the dry ingredients. Switch to a spatula and fold in the melted butter until smooth.
- Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
- Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
- To prepare the berry compote, stir the berries and sugar together in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Stir together the water and cornstarch and add to the simmering pot. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the berries have partially broken down and the liquid has thickened to a sauce consistency, approximately 7-10 minutes.
Adapted from Baking: From My Home To Yours by Dorrie Greenspan
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