Thursday, July 29, 2010

Blueberry-Strawberry Coffee Cake

I follow a bunch of food blogs, both through blogger and through facebook. I love gathering inspiration and have enough recipes bookmarked that could probably feed a small army if I buckled down and tried them all in a row.

Recently, one of the blogs I follow via facebook popped up a recipe that looked way too good to pass up, so I put it on the shorter list of "make it really soon" recipes, and today was the day. I mean, how can you resist something called Blueberry Breakfast Cake?

Like most breakfast/coffee cakes, there were two main components to this cake - the cake itself and a streussel topping for it. Little whisked together the dry ingredients for the cake, then handled putting together the streussel topping while I put together the rest of the cake batter. I did make two minor changes to the streussel topping recipe. The recipe, as printed, calls for ground walnuts, but, as I may have mentioned before, my husband is allergic to walnuts, so I tend to avoid using them. I substituted pecans, of which I had just enough left over from the nut butter challenge a couple of weeks ago. The second change was to substitute brown sugar for white, which I did just for added oomf.

As the dough came together, I was a little worried. Even just reading the recipe, I could see that there was not all that much liquid (1/2 cup of milk and 1 lightly-beaten egg) for the amount of flour (2 cups) called for, and was concerned that the batter would be too dry or crumbly. As it turns out, the batter was very thick. But since coffee cakes are generally a little denser than, say, dessert cakes, I was not at all discouraged. To this batter, I gently folded in my berries. As you may have guessed by the title of this post, I made one more modification to the recipe. Rather than use only blueberries, I also added strawberries to my cake. Because, well, why not?

Once the berries were folded in and the batter was spread as evenly as I could get it into my baking pan, it was time to sprinkle on the streussel topping that little miss had prepared. She was very excited when I told her that she could use her hands to spread the topping onto the cake, and dove in very enthusiastically. Sufficciently covered in sweet, nutty goodness, the cake went into the oven.

I don't think I can even fully explain to you how good this smelled as it baked. By the time it came out of the oven, I was pretty sure that we would not be patient enough to wait until tomorrow morning to make this a breakfast cake - we would have to bust into it for dessert tonight, thus me dubbing it a coffee cake.

The little added extra for this cake, which makes it stand apart from others of its type, is a sweet, yummy drizzle made of confectioners sugar and milk. Once the cake cooled and as dinner time was approaching, just when little miss was starting to get a bit antsy from a full day, I let her mix together the drizzle and use it to help me decorate the top of the cake. I actually made half of the amount of drizzle that is called for in the recipe, and I felt that it was plenty to top the cake, but if you have a particularly strong sweet tooth, feel free to go all out with the full amount.

So was it worth not waiting until breakfast?

You bet. This was delicious. It puffed up nicely in the oven, but maintained the slightly thicker feel of a coffee cake. The berries give it a really fresh flavor, and the sweet, nutty topping gives it just the right amount of crunch, with just the right compliment to the flavor. This made a perfect dessert cake, but that doesn't mean that we won't be trying it for breakfast tomorrow, too! Little miss and daddy loved it, and I know I will be making it again, and will not hesitate to try it with different fruits, depending on the season.

So thank you, Amanda, and please, please, please keep these awesome recipes coming. As long as you keep posting them, I can guarantee that I will keep trying them!

Blueberry Strawberry Coffee Cake
(adapted from Amanda's Cookin', from Annie's Recipes)

For cake:
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup blueberries
1 cup strawberries, cut

For topping:
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup finely ground pecans
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons cold butter

For drizzle:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk (more or less as needed to get the right consistency)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and baking powder. Add lightly beaten egg, milk and butter. Mix just until dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in the fruit and spread the batter into a greased 9 inch square baking pan.

For topping, combine sugar, flour, chopped pecans and cinnamon in a bowl. Add the butter and either cut it in or combine it in with your fingers until the mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle the topping over the batter.

Bake the cake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

For the drizzle, combine the powdered sugar and milk. If you need to thin it out to drizzling consistency, add additional milk a few drops at a time until it is how you want it. Drizzle over the top of the cake and allow it to stand until the drizzle hardens.


1 comment:

  1. Awesome use of all the amazing summer berries out there right now! Looks dee-licious.


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