Friday, January 20, 2012

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

Oh giant sour cream coffee cake muffin, how I love you!
There is nothing better than the smell of brown sugar and cinnamon baking in the oven, and the smell wafting through the entire house. So comforting and so delicious, and brings back so many childhood memories.
A real treat used to be to have hot buttered toast sprinkled with white sugar and cinnamon (might be a treat tomorrow, now that I am thinking of it). My step-mother used to, and probably still does, make an apple tea cake that was laced with cinnamon. I remember coming home from school to a warm slice of that cake. Maybe I will do that one next week. 
This recipe comes from a friend of mine, Sharilee. I worked with her for about 4 years, in two different locations and man, that girl could cook. I am positive she is still a wonderful Chef, but she departed our industry when she started her family, about 5 years ago. I am sure there are lots of people who miss her cooking, and one of them is me. 
My first attempt with this recipe turned to disaster. The cake smelled wonderful, rose like a dream, and then I turned it out and the top fell off. I mean, the freaking top fell off - the top half was on the cooling rack, and the bottom was still stuck like glue in the pan!  I still ate it. It looked horrible and tasted great.
My second attempt was much better. I really greased those giant muffin cups (the PAM lingered in the air for everyone to breathe), and even lined them with parchment tabs for easy removal. No way was my cake staying in the pan for my husband to dig out with a fork. 
My only change to Sharilee's wonderful recipe was to add icing to the top - not for sweetness, just for prettiness.  

Sour Cream Coffee Cake
Makes one cake in a bundt pan, or 6 giant muffins

Filling & Topping:
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup chopped walnuts
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons melted butter

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well and set aside.

3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease & flour a bundt pan (remember, mine stuck - so grease & flour really well) or large 6-cup muffin pan.
Cream sugar & butter, add vanilla and mix well. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well between each addition. 
Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl, mix well to combine. Add flour mixture alternating with sour cream.
Scrape half of batter into prepared pan, sprinkle with half the walnut mixture. Cover with remaining cake batter, and sprinkle the rest of the walnut mixture evenly over the top of the cake. 
Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.
Leave to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then carefully, turn out onto a wire rack to cool. 


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