Streusel-Filled Coffee Cake

You can make this cake a day ahead, refrigerate it overnight, and bake it the next morning. Just take it out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking, and allow an extra 5-10 minutes in the oven. It also freezes well.

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
1½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup shortening
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
¾ cups brown sugar; firmly packed
¾ cups Pecan Valley Pecan Pieces
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
2. Combine first four ingredients in a large bowl, and cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mixture has the consistency of cornmeal.
3. In a separate bowl, combine eggs, milk, and vanilla. Add shortening mixture, and blend until just mixed. Do not over mix. Spoon half the batter into a well-greased and floured 9-inch-by-13-inch pan, making sure the top of the dough is even and fills the corners of the pan.
4. Combine melted butter and remaining ingredi­ents to make streusel mixture. Sprinkle half of mixture over batter in pan. Spoon remaining bat­ter on top (don’t worry if batter doesn’t cover completely). Sprinkle remaining streusel mixture on top.
5. Bake in a preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until done.
6. Cut into rectangles, and serve imme­diately.

Yield: 15-20 servings

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