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Fresh Fig and Almond Breakfast Cake


This skillet cake was divided into four pieces and eaten without apology.  There was coffee:  two cups each.  There were a few dishes in the sink:  no one cared.  There was that dusty morning summer sun. So good! There was that thing I didn’t want to talk about:  how my cellphone landed in the toilet and died rather unceremoniously.  So bad.

Morning cake  makes all the difference.  Forever and always.


The key to this breakfast cakery is the melted butter.

Melted butter means that we don’t have to cream together butter and sugar in a stand mixer.

Not having to cream butter in a stand mixer means that we don’t have to bring out big kitchen gear in the morning.

Not having to pull out big kitchen gear in the morning means that we can enjoy coffee AND eat CAKE!!  Science (not at all).


The top of this cake is adorned with fresh figs.

The inside of this cake is adorned with ground cardamom.  Dreamy!


Wet ingredients + Dry ingredients.  The remix.  (Not really… just the mix.)


Let’s bake this cake in a skillet.  It feels more breakfasty that way, right?

The batter is fluffy and thick… like an edible pillow for fresh figs and sliced almonds.

Don’t act like I’m the only one that thinks about edible pillows.

Dream edible pillow:  Chocolate Chip Brioche.  No big deal.


Fresh figs, face up.  Sliced almonds every which way.  Turbinado sugar too!


This buttermilk skillet cake is a wonder in the oven.  It’s not finicky and precious.  It’s the kind of cake that doesn’t mind being slapped in a cast iron, topped with treats, and thrown in the oven.  It’s the sort of cake you can make at 9am with one eye open.  It’s forgiving… that’s what I’m trying to say.

We’re talking thick and moist.. not too sweet, but fig-topped and delicious.  I love it!

Also… if you wanted to top this cake with sliced peaches or pitted cherries, you’re smart… you totally should!

Fresh Fig and Almond Breakfast Cake

makes 1 10-inch skillet cake

Print this Recipe!

For the Cake:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract

For the Topping:

8- 10 fresh figs (depending on the size), sliced in half

1/2 cup sliced almonds

3 tablespoons turbinado (or granulated) sugar for topping

To make the cake:

Place a rack in the center of the oven and heat oven to 375 degrees F.  Butter and flour a 10-inch cast iron skillet.  You can also use a 10-inch cake pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cardamom, and sugar. Set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, and butter.  Whisk in the vanilla and almond extract.

Add the buttermilk mixture all at once to the dry ingredients.  Stir until just combined and no lumps remain.  Spoon batter into the prepared pan.  Top batter with fresh figs, gently pressing the figs part-way into the batter.  Sprinkle with sliced almonds and then sprinkle generously with sugar.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.  Allow cake to cool to room temperature before slicing to serve.

Cake will last, well wrapped in the refrigerator, for up to 3 days.