Monday, April 18, 2011

Recipes: New York-Style Crumb Cake

For the first time since my oven's been fixed, I took some time out to bake. I love to bake, the weather has been cool on and off lately, so I figured it was fine.  I probably wouldn't bake today, but then it's 97 degrees here this afternoon and that's just too hot to have the oven on. Anyhow, I've been dying to make the New York-Style Crumb Cake I saw on Noble Pig's website a few weeks ago.  Cake, jam, crumb topping... heaven on a plate. That's all I have to say about that.  So, I got the ingredients and whipped it up this weekend.  It was a bigger ordeal to make it than I thought it would be, but the final product was well worth the effort.

New York-Style Crumb Cake
From Martha Stewart--Adjusted by Noble Pig

Crumb Topping:
3 cups cake flour (not self rising)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 sticks unsalted butter

1-1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2-1/2 cups cake flour (not self rising)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk
9 ounces jam, marionberry, blueberry, blackberry...your choice
Confectioners' sugar for dusting

Make the crumb topping: Mix together flour, sugars, cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Pour warm melted butter over mixture, and mix using your hands until medium to large clumps form.

Preheat oven to 325o. Make the cake: Butter a 9 x 13 baking pan. Whisk together flour, baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl.

Beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs and yolks, 1 at a time, then vanilla. Beat in flour additions, alternating with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour. Beat until well combined.

Spoon batter into pan and spread evenly using an offset spatula. Top batter with jam before scattering crumb layer over the top.

Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Transfer to a wire rack. Let cool about 15 minutes. Dust with confectioners' sugar.

You must make this, it's definitely worth the time and cost. It tasted like heaven!  I used Smucker's Blueberry Preserves, which is so amazing, but any berry jam will do.  I'm going to make it with Strawberry Jam next time. The only thing I would say is that it took me more like 27 oz of jam (about 1 1/2 jars), rather than the 9 oz. the recipe says it takes. So, be aware that you'll need more jam than the recipe calls for.

Also, I think it warrants mentioning, but I had no idea that there was a difference between jam and preserves before today.  I went to find a link for that delicious Blueberry preserves and it turn out that preserves is not the same as jam. Preserves is more like fruit in a heavy syrup.  Huh, who knew?