Thursday, December 18, 2008
So I'm not really a health nut. Sure, I don't typically have chips or store-bought cookies or soda/pop hanging around my house. I'd just rather eat an apple, pomegranate or tortilla chips instead. I've already gotten enough grief from my girlfriends for being a "healthy eater". :-P You know who you are. *points menacingly*
Little do they know, breakfast in our house consists of some pretty fattening, but oh-so-delicious baked goods. From homemade cookies to cupcakes to leftover cheesecake to my current obsession- sour cream coffee cake. I'd had this tasty cake in several coffee shops before, and my grandmother used to make a fantastic lemon blueberry version. (Sadly, that was one recipe she failed to write down and no one can remember her measurements, so it went with her to the big kitchen in the sky.)
While the recipe I used this time around resulted in a magnificent cake, it will never measure up to my Maw-Maw's. But dang if it doesn't try...
This particular attempt is using a recipe from AllRecipes.com. Most of the coffee cake recipes I've looked at seem to follow a trend, so if you have one you love, I'd love for you to share it! :)
Because I can never leave well enough alone, I tweaked the recipe slightly. In the batter, I used 1 1/4 c. of low-fat sour cream. Low-fat sour cream is a little sour for me to eat, so it's perfect in a baked recipe like this one!
For the middle layer and topping, I was feeling too lazy to chop up the walnuts (because I never buy chopped walnuts- I always buy whole since we just eat them as snacks anyway). Instead, I used 3 Tbsp. brown sugar mixed with 2 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon- half was sprinkled in the center, the other half was spread out over top.
Sour Cream Coffee Cake
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. butter, softened (I have a tip for you at the end!)
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/4 c. sour cream
2 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
For middle layer and topping:
6 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 c. chopped nuts (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 350%deg;F. Butter and flour the bottom and sides of a 9" x 9" cake pan (I use a square Pyrex dish that gets used more than it probably should.)
2. In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until "fluffy". It'll look like a very light creamy, grainy paste.
3. Add eggs 1 at a time, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl between each addition. Add vanilla extract.
4. Add sour cream, again scraping down sides and bottom of the bowl.
5. Dump the flour, baking powder and baking soda on top of the liquid mixture. Stir the dry ingredients lightly with a fork before letting the mixer incorporate it into the liquid.
6. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon with a fork to completely incorporate.
7. Spread half of the cake batter into the bottom of the prepped dish. Sprinkle half of the cinnamon-sugar mix over the batter. Spread the other half of the batter on top, and sprinkle the remaining mix all over. If you don't use nuts, it will cover the entire middle and top in a pretty even, thick layer.
8. Bake in the center of the oven for 50-60 minutes, or until a long toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (no batter on the bottom).
9. Cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before removing to a dish/cake plate.
If you wanted to use chopped nuts in the cinnamon-sugar mix, I would highly recommend either walnuts (high in Omega-3 remember!) or pecans. And so help me, if you say "pee-can", I'll reach through the monitor and smack ya. This Southern girl insists you call them "pi-kahns". Thank you.
Now I said I had a tip for you about the butter. If you're like me, and you get bitten by the baking bug with no warning, that means your butter is cold as heck. The way I've gotten around this is by cutting the butter into fairly small cubes before placing into my mixing bowl and then beating it for a minute or so. Since the majority of recipes call for you to cream the butter and sugar together first, you're getting a headstart by creaming the butter on its own, before adding the sugar.
And as a side note, today is Hubs's and my 4th anniversary! Hard to grasp how quickly time flies... we've had our share of good and bad times, but who hasn't, right? So, here's to you and putting up with my craziness for this long, Hubs. This post is for you. :)