Springtime in Louisiana brings a few short weeks where a person can sit outside in their backyard and enjoy the sounds and sights of the morning. It’s not too hot or muggy.
Here’s a coffee cake for coffee lovers which is crunchy, not too sweet but nevertheless delicious. Add a cup of coffee and some fruit for a simple breakfast and enjoy on the back porch. We have plenty of squirrels and a woodpecker to entertain us. My dachshund loves to chase the squirrels, but fortunately the squirrels always manage to get away.
Coffee Lover’s Coffee Cake
I love coffee cake for an easy breakfast or afternoon snack. And in Louisiana you must drink it with Community Coffee–which is another story.
The coffee cake recipe is based on an idea from an old “Cooking Light” recipe. This magazine is from the publisher’s of “Southern Living” and includes articles which modify a recipe to make it lower in fat, calories and/or cholesterol than the original recipe.
In this recipe, a hint of coffee flavor comes from espresso coffee granules added to a filling and glaze. The coffee cake is not too sweet; it’s almost like a soft biscuit with a crunchy topping.
The recipe is lower in fat and sugar that a typical coffee cake. Soft margarine is used in the recipe and the “Cooking Light” recipe reduced the quantity. I used buttermilk which gives a soft texture and also makes it low fat. Just a little sugar is in the batter–not too much. Crunchy, toasted walnuts add flavor–don’t omit then. Pour an espresso coffee glaze over the top of each piece.
Easy to mix up
The coffee cake recipe is easy to mix up; it takes several bowls but you don’t need an electric mixer. I used self-rising flour to make things easier, too. Add the dry ingredients to one bowl and make a well in the center, then add the liquid ingredients and stir to combine. Spread half the batter into an oiled baking pan or casserole dish, sprinkle with half the sugar/coffee granules. Repeat the layers topping off with the walnuts. Here’s the baked coffee cake.
I had a hard time locating instant espresso coffee granules, but eventually I found a small jar on a high shelf in a grocery store. If you can’t find instant espresso coffee, instant dark roast coffee can substitute. Here are the glaze ingredients and glaze. I used whole milk rather than cream; you could also use low-fat or skim milk.
Coffee Lover's Coffee Cake
Ingredients for filling and topping:
- 3/4 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp instant espresso coffee granules
- 1 tsp cinnamon
Ingredients for batter:
- 2 cups self-rising flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/4 cup soft tube margarine, such as “I Can’t Believe It’s Butter”, melted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Ingredients for glaze:
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar (may need extra sugar)
- 1 tsp instant espresso coffee granules
- scant 1 Tbsp milk
Method and Steps
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil an 8×8″ baking pan or casserole dish.
- Spread the walnuts on baking sheet, toast in the 350 degree oven until aromatic and slightly browned for 5 minutes; don’t over bake. Immediately remove from baking sheet and chop (if needed). Set aside.
- Mix 1/4 cup sugar, brown sugar, 2 Tbsp espresso coffee granules and cinnamon for filling and set aside.
- In large bowl, combine self-rising flour, 1/2 cup sugar and baking soda. Set aside.
- In another bowl, add the egg and whisk with wire whip or fork to blend it. Add buttermilk, melted margarine and vanilla extract and stir to combine.
- Make a well in the flour mixture; pour the liquid ingredients into the flour mixture and stir to combine until just moist. Don’t over blend.
- Spread half of the batter into the oiled baking pan. Sprinkle half the sugar/espresso mixture over the batter.
- Spoon the remaining batter over this, spreading to cover. Top with remaining sugar/espresso mixture and then sprinkle on the walnuts.
- Bake for 30 minutes until the coffee cake springs back. Cool on wire rack.
- Mix the glaze ingredients in small bowl: powdered sugar, 1 tsp espresso coffee granules and milk. Whisk until well combined. If too thin, add one additional tablespoon powdered sugar at a time. Pour over cooled coffee cake. Alternately, cut coffee cake into pieces and pour glaze over individual pieces.
Original Recipe from Maylee’s Kitchen.
Here are some of the sights in my backyard this spring. My resident woodpecker has a never-ending supply of old wood from a dead tree in our backyard which we don’t have the heart to cut down.
And my showy snapdragons.
The deep purple native Louisiana Iris thrive in their sunny spot.