I had a little helper earlier this weekend. My granddaughter “helped” roll out pie dough and punch down sourdough bread dough. Some of the first “toys” I gave her were a set of colorful measuring spoons and plastic measuring cups.
I think I tried to have my own two kids help out in baking but I do not remember. Raising them was full of the chaos of frantically wanting to raise them in a perfect manner to avoid all the ills of racism, sexism, and stereotypes in our world. I was not a “go with the flow” parent; I second guessed myself and over thought almost everything. But that doesn’t mean these weren’t enjoyable and meaningful years. I would just do some things differently if I were a parent now. But isn’t that the way it is for a lot of things in our pasts once we have life experience under our belt?
I decided to make the Cheddar Apple Coffee Cake for this lazy Monday morning. In afterthought I should have gotten up at 5:00 AM when I first awoke to start this but too late now. So it is after 10:00 when we are eating freshly baked coffee cake with our leftover coffee.
So here I am in my kitchen peeling and chopping apples. I am thinking about the Vietnamese family that lived with my family in the 1970s following the fall of Saigon. Hoa (wife and mother) could peel apples and potatoes so thin; Mom and I were impressed. I’ve never been able to replicate that but try from time to time. I dice up the cheddar cheese block and wonder if there will be some left for my husband to have with chips or crackers later.
King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary Cookbook, Page 104: Topping is 1 Cup Flour, 1 Cup Brown Sugar, 2 teas cinnamon, 1/2 Cup Butter. Mix together until looks like fine crumbs. I added sliced almonds to this.
I could not find this recipe on the KAF website. So I will write it here. It is a basic coffeecake made with buttermilk. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl: 2 Cups flour, 1 Cup whole wheat flour, 1 Tab baking powder, 1/2 teas baking soda, 1 teas salt.
In mixer bowl beat 3 eggs, 1/4 Cup oil, and 1 1/2 Cups sugar for 3 minutes. I added about 1/2 teas almond extract here. Mix in the buttermilk, 1 Cup, alternately with the flour mixture in two parts. Now stir in apples and cheddar cheese, diced and chopped 1 1/2 Cups each.
Pour into pan that has been greased and floured. Add 1/2 batter, cover with topping, repeat. Bake 350 degrees (F) for 50-60 minutes. My oven required 60 minutes. Cool in pan for ten minutes, then turn out onto plate.
The KAF cookbook section on coffee cakes teaches about the basics of coffee cakes and the options one has regarding pan sizes and additions. This is good because I added a bit of almond extract to the batter and forgot to save a third of the topping to sprinkle on the cake after turning onto the plate. This plate is one my mother gave me. She had it in the gift box it came in and I am not sure if it was ever used or not. She wanted me to have it. That is what matters. And this is her signature topping: sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Be sure to clean up aftewards.