“In the Queen’s Ballroom they broke their fast on honeycakes baked with blackberries and nuts, gammon steaks, bacon, fingerfish crisped in breadcrumbs, autumn pears, and a Dornish dish of onions, cheese, and chopped eggs cooked up with fiery peppers.” -A Storm of Swords
Valentine’s Day has always been a big deal in my family, probably second only to Christmas. Many years, it involves a big dinner, heart confetti, and assorted family and friends. This was a wonderful way to grow up, because it completely did away with the element of single/not single that can be so oppressive, especially during the dark wintery month of February. Therefore, I suggest making a batch of these for anyone in your life, whether it’s a friend, spouse, child, or what have you. After all, there are a lotta kinds of loves out there! Personally, I love how adding cornmeal to what would normally be a dessert somehow makes it suitable for breakfast. They’re small sized, letting you feel fine about scooting more than one onto your plate. They’re not too sweet, and baked with berries and nuts, not just topped with them. Honestly, they’re more like muffins, although they look as appetizing as a platter of cupcakes. The cream cheese frosting is an added layer of semi-sweet, creamy goodness. I had to curb my creativity a little with this recipe. I’d wanted to try a sort of thinly layered cake with a honey frosting in between, with nuts and berries on top. But the original says the cake is baked with berries and nuts, so I had to obey. :) This version might not be as elegant as what I had originally imagined, but it’s a delicious alternative!
Recipe for Honeycake with Blackberries and Nuts
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 egg
- 1 cup milk
- pinch salt
- 1 Tbs. baking powder
- 1/2 cup corn meal
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 pint blackberries
- 1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
Cream the butter and honey, then add the egg and milk. Gradually mix in the salt and baking powder, followed by the cornmeal and flour. Stir in the nuts and blackberries, smooshing the berris with the mixing spoon to roughly break them up for easier distribution through the batter. Spoon the batter into greased muffin tins, filling halfway up. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden.
Ingredients for Icing:
- 1/2 cup softened butter (1 stick)
- 8 oz. cream cheese (1 package)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- dash of vanilla extract
Using an electric mixer (or a lot of arm power), combine the butter and cream cheese until it’s very smooth. Add in the remaining ingredients and mix until incorporated. Spread evenly onto the completely cooled muffins.