Sunday, May 15, 2011


Our new house went through inspection. I have to say that I already had some attachment to the house. I know this because I immediately became defensive when the first little negative was mentioned. I had no way of defending her, but I couldn't help feeling like the inspector was some big bully (he was actually very good and I would highly recommend him). I knew what an inspection was, but it was quite overwhelming hearing all the bad. And you only hear the bad (OK, I only heard the bad). My husband had to go back through the house and tell me all the positives the inspector said. We are getting a good house, it needs a little updating in terms of decor but, it's a great house.
Meanwhile, my students, seeing the first signs of warm days, have begun to question why we are still learning new concepts. I have to admit that the thought of summer sounds good...but we still have a month to go. So I will continue to teach and they will continue to learn (yeah, wouldn't it be simple if that's the way it always went?).

New York-Style Crumb Cake
from Baked Explorations
Oven 350

For Crumb Topping
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and warm
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

For the Cake
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups sour cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Butter the sides and bottom of a glass 9-by-13-inch pan.
Make the crumb topping:
In a medium bowl, stir together both sugars, the salt, and cinnamon. Add the melted butter and whisk until combined. Fold in the flour until it is absorbed and set the mixture aside.

Make the Cake:
Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until it is completely smooth and ribbon like. Scrape down the bowl and add the sugar. Beat the mixture until it starts to look fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until incorporated. Scrape down the side of the bowl and mix again for 30 seconds.

Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat just until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, scraping down the bowl before each addition, beating only until it is just incorporated.

Assemble the Cake: Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Use your hands to scoop up a handful of the topping and make a fist. The topping should hold together. Break off in chunks and drop them over the cake. Repeat to use all the topping.

Remember, the topping layer will look outrageously thick. Bake the cake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Rotate the pan two times during the baking process. Cool the entire pan on a wire rack for about 30 minutes before serving.

The cake will last for 3 days, tightly covered, at room temperature.

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