Cherry and Almond Coffee Cake
This recipe passed what I like to call the “By Noon” test. Which means if I bring it into work and it’s gone by noon, it’s probably a pretty decent recipe. If it lingers on past noon well then maybe I need to work on it some.
Of course, I cheated a bit because it is a coffee cake recipe so it’s best with, well, coffee which most people drink prior to noon.
But if you need further evidence that this is a solid coffee cake, it also passed the “Get it out of the house” test. If Betsy instructs me to get it out of the house, then it’s also probably pretty decent because she’s afraid she’ll eat it all.
Ok. I’ll stop with the various tests I’ve created. But really, this was very tasty stuff.
The recipe for this coffee cake is very straightforward and you can adjust it with all kinds of fun stuff. For this version I added some almond extract and fresh cherries. You could add real almonds of course if you want, but I just did the extract.
1) Mix Streusel ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside for later.
2) Remove pit from cherries and dice them (about 15-20 cherries should be enough).
3) Mix wet batter ingredients together and set aside for later.
4) Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl and cut in butter with your fingers. Just mix it in roughly until the butter resembles pea-sized pieces. Then add the cherries.
5) Stir in the wet ingredients and mix until combined.
6) Add half of your batter to a buttered 8×8 baking dish. Top with half of the streusel topping. Then the remaining batter and finally a streusel topping.
7) Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes before serving.
Making the streusel
The streusel isn’t rocket science people, but it’s very important to the recipe. A coffee cake is just a cake without this. Making it is as simple as adding all your streusel ingredients to a bowl and mixing them up with a fork until they are well combined.
Prepping the batter
The only annoying part about this batter is getting the cherries ready. They are kind of a pain to pit and then chop. The way I get the pits out is to put the cherry down on a cutting board and slice it down the middle until your knife hits the pit of the cherry. Then roll the knife forward. The cherry should roll all the way around.
The pit should dislodge pretty easily once the cherry is cut all the way around. Then you can just roughly dice both halves! Luckily you only have to do like 15-20 of these for the whole coffee cake to get the cup of cherries you need.
Also, I like to get all my wet ingredients (milk, egg, extract) together so I can just add them all at once.
To prep the batter just mix the dry ingredients together and then add your butter. Use your fingers or a fork to roughly mix in the butter to the dry ingredients. Then add your diced cherries to the dry mix and mix everything together.
Finally, just pour in your wet mixture and stir stir stir! I had to add a few extra tablespoons of milk to my batter because I added a bit too much flour.
This was my finished batter.
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees and butter a 9×9 baking pan. It’s pretty important to butter the pan if you ever want to actually be able to remove your coffee cake from the pan.
Then add about half of your batter to the pan and spread it out evenly. It’ll be pretty thick. Then sprinkle on half of your streusel topping.
Next, add the second half of your batter to the top. This creates the signature layer of streusel that coffee cakes have. It might be kind of hard to spread the coffee cake over the streusel but just do your best.
Then sprinkle the remainder of your streusel mix on top.
Bake it at 350 degrees for about 30-35 minutes until a toothpick comes clean from the center.
The hard part
You really need to let this cool for 15 minutes before eating it. I know that sounds like a long time, but trust me. That gives time for the sugar crust to kind of develop on top.
Then serve it up!
I was a bit worried about the fresh cherries in this version. I thought they might all sink to the bottom or just get really mushy but they held up great actually and added some nice flavor to the finished cake.
So there you have it. The coffee cake that pasted both the “Get it out of the house” test and the “By noon” test!