Monday, February 27, 2012

Kitchen Experiments

Recently, on Saturday mornings, I have been experimenting in the kitchen.  I am trying to recreate the type of coffee cake you find at your local coffee shop or bakery.  I love that sugary, buttery streusel that is sometimes nearly half as thick as the cake itself. I really wanted to try and make my own at home, so I started by looking for any coffee cake recipes with super thick streusel. I found one, and tried it out, but the cake part was a bit on the dry side.  The streusel, however, was nearly perfect. I decided to try and swap out the streusel recipe from one of my own tried-and-true coffee cake recipes with this new streusel recipe.  
So, the next Saturday, bright and early, I made Coffee Cake #2.  Unfortunately, it didn't work.  The bottom cake bubbled up and through the topping, and it took way too long to bake.  It tasted good, but certainly wasn't pretty - more importantly, it wasn't what I was trying to recreate.  On to Round Three.  I tried yet another coffee cake recipe with the new streusel, and still no luck.  Last weekend, I took a break - much to my family's dismay.  Next week, it's back in the saddle.

Here 's my tried-and-true coffee cake, before the streusel swap!  Even without a super thick streusel, it's still a great cake, and can make your Saturday morning pretty special indeed.

Buttermilk Coffee Cake
2 1/2 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter
Mix the above ingredients until crumbly, and remove 1/2 cup of the mixture to reserve for streusel.  To this, add 1/3 cup chopped nuts. 
To the original crumb mixture, add:
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
In small bowl, mix :
1 egg
1 cup buttermilk
Add half of the milk mixture to the crumb mixture, and beat at medium speed for 2 minutes.  Add the remaining milk mixture, and beat for an additional 2 minutes.  Pour into a greased 9x13 inch baking pan and sprinkle with the reserved nut streusel.  Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30-40 minutes.


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