As I don't have a vacation home of my own, I like to make myself an attractive candidate as a house guest. Forget the same-old bottle of wine or potted plant as a hostess gift—I give the gift of sugar.
The truth is that if I have the luck to be staying in someone's beach or lake house, and I find myself out of the city and into the fresh air, I love getting up and into the kitchen before the rest of the house begins to stir. I'll mix up an easy, fruit-forward cake that people can dig into for breakfast, then continue to snack on all weekend.
My rules? The cake should be easy to make with a well-stocked pantry (I consider that to include flour, sugar, eggs, and butter) and seasonal fruit. The recipe should make a large portion so people can break off hunks at their leisure. And it shouldn't be anything too crazy: breakfast is usually a hodgepodge affair of cereal, eggs, and fruit. My cake isn't meant to be the star, just a nice homemade accompaniment. These recipes all fit the bill. So whether you're trying to be a great house guest, a great host, or hey, you're just into baking something delicious for yourself, check out these simple summer breakfast cakes by clicking through the slideshow above or heading straight to the recipes below.