In honor of Fall, last weekend, we made the trek “off Cape” to C.N. Smith Farm to pick apples and get pumpkins! It’s a tradition that my fiancé and I have done four Falls running now and I LOVE IT. The fresh air, the smell of apples, getting a warm cup of apple cider afterwards (did I mention it was 70 degrees that day? Ugh, global warming).
Fortunately (unfortunately?) apple picking means lots and lots and LOTS of apples. Therefore, my next few recipes will be apple-centric as I try to get through all these babies.
For my first apple recipe, I went with this month’s Food and Wine Baking Bucket List Challenge, which is Apple Crumb Coffee Cakes and is the 6th month I’ve been in it. I made a few modifications, like adding more cinnamon and more apples, which overall made the crumb cakes softer and more moist, which is perfect with my favorite kind of topping: streusel (butter and sugar that gets a tinsy bit crispy and crunchy while remaining soft and crumbly – YUM).
For the Streusel:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
For the Crumb Cakes:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup sour cream
1 large egg, beaten
3/4 cup peeled, small-diced apples (I used Cortland apples, which is what we picked)
Preheat the oven to 350°.
To make the streusel, in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle, combine the flour with the brown sugar and salt. Add the butter pieces and mix at medium-low speed until the mixture resembles coarse meal; continue mixing the streusel until very small clumps form. Transfer the streusel to a large plate and refrigerate until it is well chilled, about 10 minutes.
To make the crumb cakes, line 18 standard-size muffin cups with paper liners. Spray the liners with cooking spray. In the mixer bowl, combine the flour with the granulated sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon. Add the butter pieces and beat at low speed until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the sour cream and beaten egg and beat until the batter is smooth. Add the diced apple and beat just until incorporated.
Fill the muffin cups halfway with the crumb cake batter. Press the streusel into clumps and sprinkle on top. Bake the crumb cakes in the center of the oven for about 30 minutes, until risen, golden and springy to the touch; rotate the pans halfway through baking. Let the crumb cakes cool slightly before serving.
Yield: 18 crumb cakes