Strawberry Coffee Cake

I have been buried in strawberries lately. They were on sale at the grocery store and I just couldn’t resist. I tried to but I just couldn’t. Okay, I lied, I didn’t try to resist anything… I dove right in. So after using one pint for ice cream and another to snack on, I was left with one more pint that was starting to go past their prime. So what else was there to do besides make a cake? Make a cake that is acceptable for breakfast, of course!

I used a recipe from Saveur, with some slight changes,¬†for the base of this recipe and snuggled strawberries in between the cake and the crumble. There is a lot of butter in this recipe, we’re looking at a total of 2 1/2 sticks of butter, equaling out to 20 whole tablespoons. You may be thinking that is an awful lot of butter, and if you are in fact thinking that I am going to tell you to unthink what you are thinking and embrace this buttery goodness.

To make the crumb topping, you need cold butter cut in 1/2-inch cubes and after combining the dry ingredients, cut in that cold butter using a pastry blender or two forks. Or heck, if you’re feeling in the mood, use your fingers.

Then stir in finely chopped walnuts and stick it in the refrigerator to keep it cold, therefore crumbly.

For the cake portion of these delight, it is pretty similar to my blackberry crumb cake. Cream together softened butter and more sugar and in a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients.

Now, if you are thinking that there is a lot of sugar in this recipe, then I am going to tell you that you are correct. But really, God must have created sugar cane for a reason. And really, it’s not like you should be eating this for breakfast, snack, lunch and dessert. Does that mean I don’t eat it at least three times a day? I plea the fifth.

So add in one-fourth of the flour mixture into the buttery sugar and mix.

Then add in some milk and mix.

Now another fourth of the flour mixture and… you guessed it… mix. Repeat this process once more until everything in incorporated.

Then layer it in a buttered pan and top it with sliced strawberries.

Next, top it all off with that crumb mixture in the refrigerator. This was the point where I realized I should have used a larger dish. I bet if you use a 9 x 13 pan, you’re coffee cake will come out 20 times better than mine did. And that’s saying a lot, because mine very tasty.

Another thing, see those large-ish pieces of butter? Well, that’s great for pie crust… but after making my blackberry crumble pie, I realized that’s no so great for a crumb topping. So be sure to break down the butter a bit more. It helps to use your hands for this process. So yes, mine overflowed and could have used some more crunch, but follow those tips and you’ll be in the clear.

Besides, who says a delicious coffee cake needs to be beautiful? Not me!

Strawberry Coffee Cake

FILLING
1 pint strawberries, hulled and sliced
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder (can be substituted for corn starch)

CRUMB TOPPING
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons butter (1 1/2 sticks), cold and cut into half inch cubes
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

CAKE
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons butter (1 stick), softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup milk

Gently toss together strawberries, sugar and arrowroot powder. Set aside.

To make the crumb topping; mix together the flour, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder and salt. Thoroughly cut in butter until butter pieces are small and moist clumps form when pressed together. Stir in walnuts and keep in refrigerator until ready to use.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 baking dish.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together softened butter and sugar. Beat in egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Add in one-fourth of flour mixture, beating until smooth. Then add in 1/2 of the milk followed by another one-fourth of the flour mixture. Repeat this process once more.

Spread cake batter evenly into the prepared baking dish. Top with sliced strawberries then distribute crumb topping evenly to cover.

Bake until golden and cooked through, about 40 minutes.

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