Bublanina ( boo-blah-nee-nah) . . .” bubbly cake.”
Fun to say and fun to eat.
There are lots of versions of this coffeecake on the internet, but I liked this one from Barbara Rolek on About.com with blueberries, or čučoriedky (here is the version with cherries, or čerešne or ceresnova, which is known as meggyes lepeny in Hungary).
Blueberry Bubalnina (Czech Coffee Cake)
Adapted from Barbara Rolek. I replaced the butter with oil to keep it parve/dairy-free. I also changed the preparation method because I wasn’t creaming butter.
I would add lots of lemon rind and some lemon juice next time instead of the orange liqueur and orange rind. I would also like a cinnamon crumb topping, but I guess that isn’t traditional.
3 ounces oil (6 Tbl.–original recipe called for 4 ounces butter)
3.5 ounces sugar (1/2 cup)
3 egg yolks (room temperature)
1 Tbl. orange liqueur (I used Binyamina Harmonia liqueur plus a Tbl. of vanilla extract, but I would use juice of half a lemon plus the vanilla next time) (Note: the 2nd time, I used the Harmonia liqueur, 1 tsp. vanilla, plus a Tbl. lemon juice)
1 tsp. orange zest (or lemon zest)
1/2 tsp. salt (I used 1/2 tsp. kosher salt and it was enough)
3 egg whites, room temperature
pinch cream of tartar
4.5 ounces flour (1 cup)
pint blueberries (2 cups)
cinnamon vanilla sugar for sprinkling on top, optional
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (I think 375 degrees would be better; my bublanina could have been more brown on top). Grease a square pan (the original recipe called for a 9″, but I used an 8″ square pan).
Beat the yolks and sugar together until light and fluffy. Gradually add the oil and beat until combined. Add the liqueur, zest, and salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites and the pinch of cream of tartar until stiff (I reserved a Tbl. of sugar to beat in towards the end of whipping to help stabilize the mixture).
The original recipe says to alternately fold in the egg whites and the flour into the yolks. I found this a bit hard to do. In the end, I dumped the egg yolk mixture over the egg whites and gradually added flour while I folded everything together. This was easier.
Put the batter in the greased pan and scatter over the blueberries (and can sprinkle over cinnamon vanilla sugar plus a drizzle, about 1 tsp., lemon juice). Bake for 30-40 minutes. Test in the center with a toothpick or cake skewer to see if done. THIS IS IMPORTANT. I didn’t do this. I pulled it out after about 40 minutes, but it still looked a little pale (which is why I would go with 375 degrees next time). The cake was perfect everywhere but in the very center, where it was a bit underdone.