The Yankee Chef
A “buckle” is one of the oldest New England desserts still around. Beginning in the late 17th century, any berry or fruit was poured into a kettle, Dutch oven, or whatever pan a family had, and a thin cake batter was poured over the top. It was then baked until the cake “buckled” into the fruit that was stewing and cooking down. A simple recipe, but such a perfect replacement for strawberry shortcake, and I believe to be the best type of base for a scoop of ice cream this summer.
Nonstick cooking spray
2 heaping cups of hulled, sliced fresh strawberries
3/4 cup sugar, divided
2 teaspoons lemon or lime juice
1/2 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
1/2 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
Lightly grease an 8 or 9-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Evenly spread strawberries in pan. Sprinkle 3 tablespoons sugar over the top, followed by the lemon or lime juice. Mix with a spoon so all strawberries are coated with sugar. Set aside for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
In a bowl, whisk thoroughly the milk, egg, and butter. Add remainder of sugar, flour and baking powder, blending batter well. It does not need to be completely lump-free.
Drizzle over the top of the strawberries that have begun to “weep” its juice into the pan. Lightly shake pan for the batter to get into the strawberries.
Bake for about 20–25 minutes, or until the cake has started to brown and it bounces back when pressed.
Remove from oven and serve up hot with a scoop of your favorite ice cream on top. Or, also delicious, allow the Buckle to completely cool before enjoying it with ice cream, a good option especially when the temperature outside starts climbing.