Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake
Crumbly cinnamon streusel ribbons the center and crowns the top of this tender cake. Ideal for serving to friends invited over for coffee or at a weekend brunch, it can be made in a tube pan, or, for a more decorative look, in your prettiest Bundt pan.
For the streusel filling:
- 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 Tbs. all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup (2 1/2 oz./75 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
- 3/4 cup (3 oz./90 g) chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted
- 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
For the batter:
- 2 1/2 cups (12 1/2 oz./390 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups (10 oz./315 g) granulated sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups (12 oz./375 g) sour cream
Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter and flour a 10-inch (25-cm) tube pan or Bundt pan.
To make the streusel filling, in a small bowl, combine the butter, flour, brown sugar, nuts and cinnamon. Using a pastry blender or fork, mix until crumbly. Set the streusel aside.
To make the batter, in a bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
To make the batter by hand, in a large bowl, using a wooden spoon, beat together the butter and granulated sugar until light and creamy. Mix in the eggs and vanilla, beating until smooth. Add the dry ingredients in 3 batches alternately with the sour cream and stir with a rubber spatula just until the batter is almost smooth.
To make the batter using an electric mixer, in a large bowl, beat together the butter and granulated sugar on medium-low speed until creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the vanilla. Add the dry ingredients in 3 batches alternately with the sour cream and mix on low speed just until the batter is blended and almost smooth.
Pour half of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with the rubber spatula. Sprinkle evenly with half of the streusel filling. Cover evenly with the remaining batter and sprinkle with the remaining streusel.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out of the pan and let cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. Serves 12.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Essentials of Baking (Weldon Owen, 2003)