Friday, June 12, 2009

Fruity Crumb Cake

Whoa. I really don't have anything to say about this crumb cake, but whoa. I snagged the recipe from Smitten Kitchen, a truly entertaining and deeply enjoyable blog. Follow it. Read it. Great pictures.

Could have probably gone even smaller with this downslice, but we had a friend over for dinner and I was feeling magnanimous. Plus David has started complaining that I am getting too good with the math, leaving us with approximately no leftovers. So it served three, healthily, with one slice to spare.

Deb at the Smitten Kitchen uses rhubarb in her crumb cake, which looks absolutely divine. I think tart fruits (rhubarb, blueberries, raspberries, etc.) work best in this recipe, because sweet ones (strawberries, peaches, any other fruit) tend to be a little too mellow. We had peaches and blues, so that's what went in, but I'm dying to try rhubarb. Maybe the CSA will come through. Who knows?

Fruity Crumb Cake
(c/o Smitten Kitchen; serves 4; total time about 1 hr)

1/4 lb. fruit (I used 1 peach + 1/3 cup blueberries)
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp cornstarch

2 1/2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 1/2 Tbsp white sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch salt
4 Tbsp butter, melted
3/4 cup + 2 Tbsp flour (cake or all purpose)

2 1/2 Tbsp sour cream
1 egg
1 tsp vanila
1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp soda
1/4 tsp powder
pinch salt
1/4 cup sugar
3 Tbsp butter
  1. Preheat oven to 350ยบ and grease 5-inch round or 4-6 inch square pan.
  2. For the fruit: combine fruit, sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl; set aside.
  3. For the topping: melt butter in medium bowl and stir in sugars, cinnamon, salt, and flour. It will look like a regular dough (not crumbly). Do not fret.
  4. For the cake: In a small bowl, combine sour cream, egg and vanilla. In another bowl, mix together flour through salt. Add butter and a scoop of sour cream mix to dry ingredients. Beat until moistened. Add rest of sour cream mix and beat until combined. Pour into prepared pan, reserving about 1/4 cup of batter. Top with fruit, then gently spread remaining batter. Crumble topping over surface, aiming for uniform-ish size. Pop in the oven and bake 30-35 minutes, until tester inserted comes out clean. Cool 20 minutes.
  5. Grab some powered sugar and pour into a sieve (or, in my case, a tea brewer). Sift over top for a pretty presentation.


  1. Can I make the batter, topping, and fruit mixture the night before, then assemble and bake in the morning?

  2. Topping and fruit mixture, yes. Batter, I wouldn't. Stuff can happen with the dry stuff absorbing the wet stuff and all... You really don't need beaters/mixer if you just give it a vigorous whisk, so it ought to come together pretty quickly.

  3. Actually, a couple thoughts: (1) leave the topping at room temperature: don't refrigerate, it will be fine. And (2) if you do the fruit the night before, it will create some juice as it sits. Scoop out the fruit, leaving the juice behind, when it comes time to assemble.