Hey, y’all. What a week, huh? After of a week of layoffs and furloughs, culminating with loss of life and property across the country, I found myself exhausted, incredibly sad and totally grossed out. The never ending onslaught of mean-spirited, hard hearted and vindictive comments from certain fellow Americans makes me run and hide. Those who contribute nothing to the betterment of humankind yet feel they are entitled to an easy, idyllic life have no room in my world. I cannot be around that element. I will not be around that element. I seek respite by doing yard work, the reward being a garden that makes me happy by its beauty and satisfaction and contentment from hours upon hours of manual labor. I lose myself in books and needlepoint. And I spend waaaay too much money at produce stands. I do my part supporting local farms. My trunk ends up filled with boxes of fruits and vegetables and there are only three of us in the house. For example, I bought 10 ears of corn, again for only three people. And you need to eat fresh corn right away! But here’s what I did. I shucked all the corn, stood the ears up one by one on a platter and sliced off all the kernels. I think I ended up with six or seven cups of fresh kernels. I divided them, labeled my bags and threw them in the freezer. Last night I prepared homemade cream style corn with crisp applewood smoked bacon and a splash of almond cream. It was like summer in a skillet. I always buy an abundance of zucchini and here’s one of the things I do with it. I grate 5-6 whole zucchinis using the big holes on a box grater. I squeeze out all the excess juices and set the waterless zucchini aside. I thinly slice an onion and cook it in a large skillet coated with a little olive oil. When the onion is translucent, I jack up the heat and throw in the zucchini. Stirred and cooked until softened, I add a large, torn up handful of fresh basil leaves, season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper and voila! I have a side that all three of us love. And it’s good cold the next day with lunch.
Leaving the farm stand, I realized I went a little crazy with the blackberries but they were so gorgeous, like sparkling, raw black tourmalines or jet. The following recipe was to the perfect course of action so as not to waste any of my haul. This dump cake is so simple and, really, any berry or combination of berries may be used with great success. That said, I used a white cake mix but a yellow cake mix would be equally as good. It’s such a pretty dessert and who doesn’t love fresh fruit in season? I feel this cake is more like a cobbler in that it doesn’t hold its shape when served. It’s satisfying when presented warm with or without ice cream and is just as delicious when an enormous, cold spoonful turns out to be your secret, stolen midnight snack. Can I get an amen? I hope y’all try this summer treat. Meanwhile let’s try to be of service to our fellow mankind while continuing to be kind hearted, considerate and selfless to all. Peace.
Farm Stand Blackberry Dump Cake
- 8 cups fresh blackberries
- grated zest of one lemon
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 1 12-ounce can evaporated milk, I had only 2 5-ounce cans on hand and the dish turned out fine
- 1 15.25-ounce box classic white or yellow cake mix
- 1 cup butter, melted
- Pre-heat oven to 350°. Lightly cover a 9×13-inch pan or the equivalent with non-stick cooking spray.
- Scatter blackberries evenly over the bottom of the pan and top berries with lemon zest.
- To a medium size bowl add eggs and sugar. Beat to combine well.
- Add the milk to the egg mixture, mix well to combine and pour over the berries.
- Evenly scatter the dry cake mix over the berry mixture. Do not stir.
- Spoon melted butter over the cake mix covering as much of the cake mix as possible.
- Bake for 50-55 minutes or until top is golden and the edges are sightly browned.
- Cool on a rack 15-20 minutes prior to serving.
- Cover leftovers tightly and store in refrigerator when completely cool.