Makes One 10-inch Bundt cake
I believe a good coffee cake is one of the best baked goods to have in your bag of tricks. I sometimes bake, and take, this moist, streusel-packed coffee cake to a friend who is in need of nourishment after a death in the family, the birth of a baby, or as a homemade gift. I hosted a New Year’s Day brunch for my family this year and the entire coffee cake was devoured – bit by bit.
My first experience with Sour Cream Coffee Cake was back in 1989 at Zingerman’s in Ann Arbor, Michigan. My sister Barbara lived in Ann Arbor for a short time while she was getting her Ph. D. in English at Michigan (The University of Michigan, that is). The best male cook I know and I enjoyed driving down to Ann Arbor from Midland, where we lived at the time, to sleep on her floor, wake up and go to Zingerman’s, shop at the “original” Borders bookstore, and sip cappuccino at our favorite coffee house. What good times those were.
Brown Sugar Streusel
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
2 1/2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons heavy cream, 1/2 & 1/2, or milk
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 10-inch Bundt or tube pan with non-stick baking spray with flour, or grease and flour pan.
Make the streusel by placing the brown sugar, 1/2 cup flour, cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 3 tablespoons butter in a bowl. Use your fingers to press the ingredients together until it forms clumps. Mix in the nuts. Set the streusel aside.
For the cake, mix together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir well with a whisk to blend the ingredients.
With an electric mixer, cream the 3/4 cup butter and granulated sugar together for at least 5 minutes until light and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla extract. Add the eggs one at a time until well blended. Stir in the sour cream and blend well. Add the flour mixture to the batter, mixing on low just until blended.
Spoon a scant 1/3 of the batter into the prepared pan and spread. Top with 1/2 of the streusel. Spoon on another 1/3 of the batter and spread gently if necessary. Top with remaining streusel. Spread remaining batter on top of the streusel. Bake for about 55 to 60 minutes until a thin knife inserted into the cake comes out clean.
Let cool in pan for 15 minutes. Turn cake out of pan and let cool completely. Mix together, in a measuring cup with a spout, the confectioners’ sugar and enough cream or milk to make a thick glaze. Pour the glaze over the cake letting it run down the edges in thick dribbles.