Sunday, December 11, 2011

Ultimate Streusel Cake...............

Here is a recipe that is going to knock your Christmas socks right off. This recipe is simply amazing. A moist cake that has a streusel filling that is then topped off with streusel topping, brown sugar....lots of it, cinnamon and pecans, yum. Plus it makes your house smell so fragrant during the holidays and it is a nice change from really rich and chocolaty desserts.

I also, however, have a thing for Bundt pans and Bundt cakes, I think what it is, is that you simply pour batter into a mold and voila, it comes out party perfect, ready to be plated on a pretty little cake stand. I also love Bundt pans because when I use to work at Williams Sonoma and had to straighten all the gorgeous Bundt pans, I was taken by all the gorgeous, detailed shapes and sizes of a bundt pan.

Williams Sonoma sells the brand Nordic Ware which is a family owned company that is been known for their amazing bakeware since 1946. There are traditonal Bundt pans, rose shaped Bundt pans, castle Bundt pans, mini Bundt pans and so many more. I love them all and would love to add some more Bundt pans to my bakeware collection (hint hint...Thad).

Pecan Streusel Topping
1 1/2 cups packed light-brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cloves
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped pecans

Struesel Cake
Nonstick cooking spray with flour
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups sour cream

2 1/2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup milk

Start off by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 10-inch Bundt pan (or other tube pan with a 3-quart capacity) with cooking spray; set aside.

To make the streusel filling, combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and cloves in a medium bowl. Stir in granulated sugar, flour, and salt. Then using your hands or a pastry cutter, cut in butter until combined and mixture is crumbly, forming into small little peas; lastly stir in the nuts. Transfer to the refrigerator until ready to use.

For the cake, using the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until well combined. Next beat in vanilla. Add reserved flour mixture and sour cream in alternating batches, starting and ending with the flour; beat the batter until just combined.

Once mixed, using your sprayed Bundt pan, spoon half the batter into the pan. Then cover first layer of batter with two-thirds of the streusel mixture. Next spoon in remaining batter, smoothing top; sprinkle with remaining streusel.

Place the bundt cake in the oven and bake until golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean, about 1 hour. Transfer to wire rack and let cool 45 minutes; invert cake onto a wire rack, set over a rimmed baking sheet to help with crumbs and loose streusel.

In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioners' sugar and milk until combined; set icing aside and cover with plastic wrap, until ready to use. Once cake has cooled to where is is almost room temperature, drizzle the icing over the cooled, inverted cake. To give the icing that dripped look, place the icing on the rim of the Bundt cake and let the icing naturally and slowly fall down the sides.

This Bundt cake is a treat indeed and the cinnamon, brown sugar and pecans will warm your heart and taste buds this holiday season.

Merry Christmas!