Thursday, February 11, 2010

Blueberry Boy Bait

This recipe comes complete with an incredibly cute back-story. In 1954, a 15-year-old girl won second prize in the junior division of a Pillsbury baking contest. Her entry was a moist and tender blueberry cake that was named after the effect it had on teenage boys--one bite and they were hooked. Adorable right? I tell ya, I’m a sucker for cuteness.

I read about this recipe in 2006 in an issue of Cook’s Country and the story always stuck with me. When I saw the recipe on the Smitten Kitchen site last year I moved it towards the top of my to-bake list. That was way back in July, when the days were warm and blueberries were actually in season. I guess it speaks to the length of my to-bake list that I didn’t actually get to the recipe until now.

Anywhoo, the important thing is that I finally did get to bake this boy bait and boy was I glad I did. Get it? “Boy” was I glad I did? Ha, I crack myself up. You know who else cracks themselves up? My boyfriend; who seemed to think it was hilarious to continuously make remarks about how I was trying to attract other men by baking this boy bait. Luckily I had this delicious cake to shove in his mouth to quiet him down for a bit.

And it is delicious. A combination between a coffee cake and a blueberry muffin, it’s moist and filled with just enough blueberries to add a bit of tartness here and there. It’s definitely not the healthiest baked good, with a half a pound of butter and over a cup of two kinds of sugar, plus more sprinkled on top for good measure. But hey, when you’re baiting a boy, all bets are off.

Alright let’s get down to business. Here’s what you’ll need for this boy bait:
Butter (and lots of it!), eggs, flour, baking powder and salt, brown and white sugar, milk and blueberries (fresh or frozen).

Start by mixing the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.
Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
It should look a little something like this:
Next you’ll alternately mix in the flour and milk until both are just combined.
Mmmmmm, cake batter. What a delicious sight. What could make it even more delicious? Some blueberries of course.
You’ll want to toss them with a little bit of flour before adding them to the batter. This is supposed to help them stay suspended in the cake as it bakes and not fall to the bottom. As you can see in my finished cake some of the blueberries still fell. You know what though? I ate it anyways.

The batter goes in to a buttered baking dish and then to top it all off: some more blueberries and little sprinkling of cinnamon sugar.
Bake it just until a toothpick comes out clean, and you’ve got your boy bait.
Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, so maybe now's the perfect time to call up that certain someone you've had your eye on and bake em up some bait.

Blueberry Boy Bait
Adapted from Cook's Country

2 cups plus 1 tsp all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
16 tbsp (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (if using frozen berries, do not defrost, they will turn the batter a blue-green color)

1/2 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (see note above)
1/4 granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 13 x 9 inch baking pan (or a silly 8 x 12 inch pan if that's all you got like me)

Whisk 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt together in medium bowl. With electric mixer, beat butter and sugars on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until just incorporated. Reduce speed to medium and beat in one-third of flour mixture until incorporated; beat in half of milk. Beat in half of remaining flour mixture, then remaining milk, and finally remaining flour mixture. Toss blueberries with remaining 1 tsp flour. Using rubber spatula, gently fold in blueberries. Spread batter into prepared pan.

Scatter blueberries over top of batter. Stir sugar and cinnamon together in small bowl and sprinkle over batter. Bake until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool in pan 20 minutes, then turn out and place on platter. Serve warm or at room temperature. Cake can be stored in airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.


  1. looks good! LOVE that it's called "boy bait"

  2. Nom nom nom nom this looks so yummy! And you and Nick are way adorable.

  3. I love retro desserts. They all used to have such cute names!

  4. I remember reading this post several weeks ago and thought...hmmm...I should make this sometime. Now "the boy" has invited me over for dinner on Thursday. Going to make this. Maybe he will FINALLY ask me out? Ha! Here's to hoping...

  5. I think baked goods are always the way to a man's heart. :) Let us know how it turns out!

  6. Your bake list sounds about like mine - that happens to me all the time! I love Cook’s Country and had printed this out a while ago; finally made it yesterday. A blogger mentioned that it tastes best the first day, so I divided it by four and baked it in a 6-inch round pan for my husband and I. My husband loved it, as promised :) Personally, I’d just had dental work done and with my numb tongue, I couldn’t taste it as well, but it was good enough to want to make again!


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