Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Apples, Coffee, and Betty Crocker

Dear Bunhead, I miss you. Just like the last time I went on an involuntary blogging hiatus, here I am again---months of abandoning the kitchen for real life and now, I'm eagerly attempting my return. The fall is here and I just could not resist. 

My dad's birthday happens to fall in September and I had my first opportunity to get back in the kitchen. My first thought was to start with apples, since my dad can't get enough of my mom's famous apple pie. Since my mom was a little busy planning the dinner we'd be making him, I volunteered to make the birthday dessert.
So obviously, my dad likes apples. And cinnamon, of course. And instead of attempting to recreate my mom's pie without her assistance in executing her secrets, I immediately remembered a cake I had made in my initial post-college baking extravaganza--- the Apple Upside Down Streusel Coffee Cake. No combination of words have ever sounded better together. My dad and I also share a love of coffee, so I knew any kind of treat that would marry perfectly with our caffeine addiction would be the perfect choice. 

This cake is unbelievable. The combination of streusel and the baked apples (that have bathed in butter and brown sugar, might I add) puts the average coffee cake to shame. And its a classic---I found this recipe a few years ago in my mom's Betty Crocker Cookbook from 1987 (5th Edition). I couldn't pass it up when I first came across the recipe and I knew it would be perfect for this occasion, especially with my coffee the next morning!
Apple Upside Down Streusel Coffee Cake  
adapted from Betty Crocker 

  • 1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • 3 tbsp firm butter
Mix all ingredients until crumbly. Set aside. 

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar 
  • 2 medium apples, thinly sliced 
Heat oven to 350 degrees. While preheating, heat butter in 9x9x2 in pan until melted. Sprinkle with brown sugar and arrange apples in pan. Make sure the sides of the pan are greased.

Coffee Cake 
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar 
  • 3 tsp baking powder (omit if using self rising flour)
  • 1 tsp salt (omit if using self rising flour)
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup milk (I used vanilla soy milk for some extra flavor)
Make sure oven is heated to 350 degrees and that streusel and apples are prepared. Beat remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl, or stand mixer, low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed, scraping the bowl occasionally, for 2 minutes. Spread half of the batter in the pan on top of the apples, sprinkle with half of the streusel, top with remaining batter and sprinkle with remaining streusel. Bake for 50 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean. Immediately invert the pan on a heat proof serving plate. Let pan remain a minute for drizzle from the apples. Eat with coffee or tea, or by itself, & enjoy! 

all photos © Bunhead in the Kitchen, 2012

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