Saturday, December 28, 2013

Streusel Squares

I was supposed to post this cake 8 days ago. What's funny is that I made this cake a month ago but I'm barely posting it today. I had fully intended to get this posted on time. Obviously that didn't happen. Best laid plans and all that. 

I don't have much of an excuse for the delay. I could say it was because I was finishing up my first semester of grad school. But that finished on the 6th of this month. I'm happy to say my first semester was a great success! I received 3 A+, 2 A's, and 1 A-. I think not too shabby for someone who hasn't been in a traditional classroom setting for 11 years, had an 8 hour internship, 10 hours of Graduate Assistantship work, 2 small kids, and no husband or family in town. I'm happy with my results! However, that means I've been lazy since school got out for winter break.

I did read a book though! For fun! Donna Tartt's Golfinch was a healthy undertaking at 771 pages but I finished it yesterday and the beauty of the novel did not disappoint. Unfortunately, I need to get back to the reality of Grad school around the 1st so I can start prepping for the new semester. Spring will consist of 4 courses, 20 hours of internship, and 10 hours of Graduate Assistantship work. But this time The Hubble will be home to help. 

But that's enough about me and my school shenanigans. Now for the cake! I made this cake for The Cake Slice Bakers group. This streusel cake is MY first cake from our new book. I skipped November. The group voted and chose the book Great Cakes by Carole Walters. I wasn't thrilled with the selection for November nor did I have any time whatsoever to go get the ingredients so I skipped the first cake. However, I'm glad I jumped in for December's cake. This streusel cake was delicious! It was light and flaky with a topping to kill for! I took the cake to class (since I made it so long ago) and it was devoured within an hour. The next time I make the cake, I would add nuts (probably pecans) to the topping; I love texture. But other than that I thought the cake was perfect! 

Since I'm WAY late posting this cake, the linky tool thing to the other Cake Slice Bakers is closed but you should still try to pop over to the blogroll and see what everyone else thought of the cake. And don't forget to make the cake yourself so you can form your own opinion too! Enjoy!

Streusel Squares
Recipe from Great Cakes by Carole Waltervia Lick the Bowl Good


Streusel Topping:
  • ⅓ cup (⅔ stick) unsalted butter
  • 1¼ cups unsifted all-purpose flour
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2¼ cups unsifted all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup superfine sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk 
  • 1 large egg white


Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 350⁰F. Butter a 9 x 13 x 2” pan.
To Make The Streusel Topping: Melt the butter, then cool slightly.

Add the flour, sugar and cinnamon all at once and stir with a fork until the mixture forms small crumbs. Take a handful of the crumbs and make a fist to press the mixture into a large clump, and then separate into smaller clusters, at least two or three times the size of the original crumbs.

Repeat until all of the crumbs have been reshaped, then set aside.

To Make The Cake: Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt, set aside.

Cut the butter into 1-inch pieces and place in the large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to soften on low speed. Increase speed to medium-high and cream until smooth and light in color, about 1½ to 2 minutes.

Add the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, taking about 6 to 8 minutes to blend it in well, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.

Add the eggs and additional yolk, 1 at a time at 1-minute intervals, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.Blend in the vanilla.

Reduce mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk, dividing the flour mixture into three parts and the milk into two parts, starting and ending with the flour. Mix just until incorporated after each addition, scraping the sides of the bowl and mix for 10 seconds longer.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with the back of a tablespoon.

Beat the egg white lightly with a fork, and using a pastry brush, spread about half of the beaten egg white over the top of the cake batter. Discard the remainder - the egg white helps the streusel adhere to the top of the cake.

Sprinkle the entire surface of the batter generously with the streusel, gently patting the crumbs into the batter with the palm of your hand; do not press hard.

Center the pan on the rack and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown on top, begins to come away from the sides of the pan, and the streusel is crisp. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out dry.

Remove the cake from the oven and set on a cake rack to cool. When ready to serve, dust the top with powdered sugar and cut into squares.

Can be stored at room temperature for up to 5 days.

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