I’ve tried a bunch of cherry coffee cake recipes (like this one recommended by one of John’s friend’s mom), and have been dissatisfied – I wanted a plain yellow cake, a little bit of streusel, and the cherries. I decided the thing to was to use the recipe for regular streusel coffeecake from my old Betty Crocker cookbook, the one that’s a 3-ring binder, and then add the cherries. I played around with the streusel a little bit, too – there was part of a tube of Odense almond paste in the fridge, and I grated it up and threw that in (most of it – there was enough to make few marzipan dates, too, for lunch snacks), left out the nuts, and added a little more flour. Here’s the result:
For the streusel:
- 4 TBLS butter
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 3/4 cup flour
- about 2 oz. almond paste, grated
- pinch of cinnamon
For the cake:
- 1/3 cup butter – can be part vegetable shortening – softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 TBLS baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- scant tsp. almond extract
- 2 cups white flour
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups pitted Door County cherries, thawed and drained if frozen, or pie filling
Grease and flour a 13 x 9 x 2 baking pan. Heat the oven to 350°.
Combine all the streusel ingredients except the almond paste in a bowl, – which could be your mixer bowl, and work together with the beater blade, a fork, or your fingers. When the mixture looks crumbly, ad the almond paste. Refrigerate while you mix up the rest of the cake – transfer to a smaller bowl if you used the mixer bowl.
Cream the butter and sugar together until smooth, then add the egg and beat well. Measure in the baking powder, salt, and vanilla and almond extract, and mix a few turns to combine. Add the flour, and pour in the milk. Mix to combine, then scrape the sides of the bowl and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.
Spread an even layer of batter in the prepared pan, using 1/3 to 1/2 of the batter. Get the streusel out of the fridge, and sprinkle in the big half. Spoon the cherries on top, in an evenish layer. Blob the rest of the batter on top, and spread into an even layer. Top with the remaining streusel. Bake for 45 minute to one hour, until firm in the middle when pressed.