Dana Treat – Treat Yourself

It’s All About the Topping

Posted April 26, 2011

Rhubarb “Big Crumb” Coffee Cake
In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite
Makes one 8-inch cake

For the rhubarb filling
½ pound rhubarb, trimmed
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 tsp. cornstarch
½ tsp. ground ginger

For the big crumbs
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. salt
½ cup butter, melted
1¾ cup cake flour

For the cake
1/3 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup cake flour
½ cup granulated sugar
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
6 tablespoons softened butter, cut into 8 pieces

1.  Preheat oven to 325ºF.  Grease an 8-inch-square baking pan.

2.  For the filling, slice the rhubarb ½-inch thick and toss with the sugar, cornstarch, and ginger.  Let macerate while you prepare the crumbs and cake.

3.  To make the crumbs, in a large bowl, whisk together the sugars, spices, salt, and butter until smooth.  Stir in the flour with a spatula.  It will look like a solid dough.

4.  To prepare the cake, in a small bowl, stir together the sour cream, egg, egg yolk, and vanilla.  Using a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Add the butter and a spoonful of the sour cream mixture and mix on medium speed until the flour is moistened.  Increase the speed and beat for 30 seconds.  Add the remaining sour cream mixture in two batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition, and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.  Scoop out about ½ cup of the batter and set aside.

5.  Scrape the remaining batter into the prepared pan.  Spoon the rhubarb over the batter.  Dollop the remaining batter over the rhubarb (it doesn’t have to be even).

6.  Using your fingers, break the topping mixture into big crumbs, about ½-inch to ¾-inch in size.  They don’t have to be uniform; just make sure the majority are around that size.  Sprinkle the crumbs over the cake.  Bake the cake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean of batter (it might be moist from the rhubarb), 45 to 55 minutes.  Cool completely before serving.

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