Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Orange-scented Yogurt Coffee Cake with Pecan Streusel

Mmmmm cake.  I never get tired of it.  And if  I live to be a hundred I don't think I will ever surrender my partiality for streusel-topped cakes.  (Who doesn't love streusel?)  This style of cake is so friendly and flexible. Delicious any time of day...and all on its own (needing no adornment of frosting...or sauce...or compote...or cream)...yet taking to all kinds of interesting and tasty variations.  For me these kinds of cakes are a form of seasonal baking.  During the (almost) four years I have been keeping this blog I have posted seven different streusel cakes...with dried and candied fruits, fresh fruits, interesting spices, vegetables, and a wide variety of complimentary nuts...and of course oatmeal.  And that's just a small sliver of my over-stuffed recipe file...not to mention the fact that I am always sampling new ones.  I don't think I have posted one yet that includes chocolate...but I'm sure that will be remedied one day.  Today I wanted to share a recent addition to my rotation of cakes.  It is a yogurt variation of a favorite sour cream coffee cake

Sour cream makes wonderfully moist, fine-grained and rich cakes.  Unfortunately I don't always have it on hand.  Since I have been making yogurt, I do always have that on hand.  Its use in this recipe gives a lighter crumb and softer texture...and is just as delicious.  This cake could be made without any flavorings (other than vanilla), spices or nuts...but I particularly like it with orange and pecan (two other ingredients I almost always have in the house).  

My friend Bonnie introduced me to this harmonious flavor combination a few years ago and I have found its subtlety to be addictive.  I've used it in muffins, cookies, tea cakes, scones...and now, in this simple little cake.  Enjoy.

Orange-Scented Yogurt Coffee Cake with Pecan Streusel

1/2 c. all-purpose flour (2 oz.)
1/4 t. salt
1/3 c. golden brown sugar
4 T. cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 c. pecans, lightly toasted and finely chopped (2 oz.)

1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour (200 g.)
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
10 T. plus 2 t. (150 g.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 c. sugar (200 g.)
zest of one orange (1 T.)
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 t. vanilla
2/3 c. whole milk yogurt (160 g.)

To make the streusel, whisk the first three ingredients together in a small bowl to combine.  Add the butter and rub in until mixture is crumbly.  Add the pecans, toss to combine and chill until ready to build the coffee cake.

Combine the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a small bowl and set aside.  Beat the butter and sugar until smooth.  Beat in the orange zest.  Cream until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs, one at a time.  Beat in the vanilla.  Fold in the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the yogurt, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. 

Spread the batter in a greased and floured 9x9-inch baking pan.  (If you want to be able to turn the cake out, cut a square of parchment to fit the bottom of the pan.  Butter the pan, add and butter the parchment and then flour the pan.)  

Scatter the streusel evenly over all.  Bake in a 350° oven until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean—35 to 45 minutes.  

Serve warm.  Serves 9 to 12.

1 comment:

Katrina said...

I want cake. ;) Looks so good.