Makes 12 servings
I can't remember where it was, but I've never forgotten the taste of a simple cinnamony streusel-topped coffee cake I had as a child. In honor of that memory, I present this cake. It has a streusel topping, just like the one I've never been able to forget, that caramelizes a little when it's done, and a cinnamon-swirl throughout. Check your cinnamon—it should be fresh and filled with flavor—and if you can, be sure to serve this cake still warm from the oven, when it is at its absolute best.
10-inch tube pan
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons unsalted hatter, melted
3 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold unsalted butter,
cut into tablespoons
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour the tube pan.
Make the cake:
2. Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and cream together using the electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Scrape down the bowl. Add the vanilla and eggs, 1 at a time, beating for 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape down the bowl again.
3. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add this mixture to the butter mixture in thirds, alternating with the sour cream. Beat for 45 seconds after each addition, and begin and end with the flour mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared tube pan.
Make the syrup:
4. In a small bowl, stir together the melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon.
5. Drizzle the syrup over the batter and with the blade of a knife or a skewer, swirl the syrup through the batter.
Make the streusel:
6. In a bowl, combine the sugar, cinnamon, and pecans. with a pastry cutter, cut in the butter, a few pieces at a time, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Scatter the streusel over the batter in the pan.
7. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven to a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Great American Desserts:
100 Mouthwatering Easy-to-Prepare Recipes
By Debbi Fields
Fireside; October 2000
272 pages; 70 full-color photographs
Recipe reprinted by permission.
This page created December 2000
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