Blueberry Clementine-Soaked Cake with Blood Orange Bitters

It’s been a very snowy few weeks since we’ve been back in New England. We’re snug in our cozy house that has been renovated with knotty pine floors, white subway tile in the kitchen, and rough beams throughout the downstairs. We’re happy to be reunited with our farm table, baked bean pot, blueberry rake, Eleanor the doe-eyed mount, and all the other trappings of a modern Maine home. The gray days are long, starting with one of the girls awake before sunrise, and everyone becomes cabin feverish by early afternoon. We’re doing a lot of dress up, art projects, and of course, family baking.



Clabber-Girl_0041Violet has become my apprentice. She can crack eggs without getting any shell in the bowl, mixes the batter, greases the pan, and of course licks the spoon.

I like having her tiny body next to mine, standing on a chair, curls in her eyes, seriously concentrating on the task at hand. We turn on a little music (early Neil Young is great for baking), preheat the oven, and as the sun glints off the 5 foot snow banks we dance around in our socks, folding in the berries and zesting the clementines.

A collaboration with Clabber Girl baking powder is a natural fit for our family and the way we cook. I am not a fancy baker. I like my desserts homespun. Whatever it is that baking powder does, is magic to me.


This citrus cake is so late wintry. Bright and bursting and moist, whispering that spring is not too far from our reach.



Blueberry Clementine-Soaked Cake with Blood Orange Bitters

  • Author:


This bright clementine orange cake is studded with blueberries, and soaked in clementine syrup before being drizzled with a glaze made from sugar and orange bitters.



For the cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons Clabber Girl baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons clementine orange zest
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 heaping cup of blueberries

For the clementine syrup:

  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed clementine orange juice

For the glaze:

  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 tablespoons blood orange bitters


For the cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients. In another large mixing bowl, stir together yogurt, eggs, vanilla sugar, and zest. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, and stir until combined. Add olive oil, stirring until incorporated. Fold in blueberries. Pour batter in greased, lightly floured loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes.

For the clementine syrup:

  1. In a small saucepan, bring sugar and clementine orange juice to a boil, stirring constantly. Turn down the heat and allow sauce to thicken.
  2. For the glaze:
  3. In a medium sized mixing bowl, use a whisk or a fork to mix confectioner’s sugar and bitters. You can easily substitute more clementine juice for bitters, though the bitters add a complexity that’s quite nice.

To assemble cake:

  1. After removing cake from the oven, allow to cool ten minutes, then drench in the clementine syrup. Allow syrup to soak into cake for ten minutes more, then invert onto a plate or cake stand. Drizzle with glaze and serve.


Jillian Bedell

Jillian Bedell is a writer and mother living in a farmhouse in Cushing, Maine. She is very good at talking about herself in the third person. She is co-author of Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road.


  1. Oh yum, you’re speaking my language. I want to try in like this and one with little chocolate chips instead of blueberry.

    1. I wish I was making my own bitters. Store-bought. Yes, those tiny, wild Maine blueberries make everything better.

    1. I found mine at the grocery store, Judy. The glaze can be made from any citrus juice whisked with confectioner’s sugar. We had the bitters on the bar and I thought it would it would make this rustic cake le fancier. Use what you’ve got it my cooking motto always.

  2. I found the blood orange bitters offered on Amazon. What I’d really love to know if whether I could safely sub regular oranges for the clementines. Now that the holidays are past I’m finding the quality of the clementines available locally has gone way down–they’re dry and bitter.

    Thanks in advance for your take on this.

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