Streusel-Topped Marble Coffee Cake Recipe

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Sweet Christmas Homemade Peppermints, Sugar Cake, ChocolateI love moist, fresh coffee cake, and nothing is more disappointing than a dry, dull one without enough topping or filling. This version hits all the high notes: a moist, rich sour cream cake that’s not terribly sweet, marbled with brown sugar and cinnamon, and topped with a thick layer of buttery, sugary streusel. You could bake this the day before you plan to serve it, and the cake will still be wonderfully moist, but the streusel won’t be so crisp and melting as it is right out of the oven. One option is to prep the cake batter and then let it sit overnight, crumbs and all, under plastic wrap in the refrigerator. In the morning, put the cake pan in the cold oven while you heat it up to 350°F, then bake it for the usual time once the oven hits its temperature. It won’t rise quite as high, but it will still be delicious—and freshly baked.

  • Yield: 10 Servings

Ingredients

For the Streusel
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups pecan halves
For the Cake
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
For the Marbling
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
How to Make It
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and generously butter a 9-by-13-inch pan.
  2. Mix the streusel ingredients except for the pecans in a medium bowl, using your hands to press everything together. It will be stiff and thick.
  3. To make the cake, put the butter and sugar in a bowl and use a mixer to cream until fluffy. Beat in the sour cream, followed by the eggs, one at a time. Mix in the vanilla, then add the flour and baking soda, mixing just until smooth.
  4. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. In a small bowl or cup, combine the brown sugar and cinnamon for the filling. Spoon this over the cake batter. Take the tip of a knife and drag it over the cake, turning and twisting to streak and marble the cinnamon sugar throughout the batter.
  5. Use your hands to pick up big clumps of the streusel and drop them all over the surface of the cake. Scatter the pecan halves over the top. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the cake is golden brown on top and a tester inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs clinging to it. Serve warm.
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