It’s been too long since there’s been a legitimate crumb cake here on the blog.
Crumb cake is one of my favorite treats. It’s like the low key hidden gem of the baking world. Push aside the pies and cakes and ice cream sundaes of the world and there’s crumb cake.
It’s ready to be dipped into coffee for breakfast, there when midday hunger strikes, and ready to be dressed up with ice cream for dessert.
It’s also amazingly versatile. Top it with whatever fruit or nuts or vegetables (why not?) you want. It’s forgiving and welcoming and so delicious.
It’s cherry week so I topped it with cherries and blueberries to mix things up. Because like crumb cake plays well with other ingredients, so do cherries.
This cake has a few secrets to its awesomeness other than cherries. The delicate vanilla cake is studded with some of the fruit. This way the flavor of the fruit permeates every single bite. It does not take away from the topping, both crumb and fruit.
Let’s face it, the cake needs to be good, and it is, but the real star here is the top of this cake. There’s a thick layer of fruit that brings a pie like vibe and then there are the crumbs in all their cinnamon and brown sugar glory.
I doubled this recipe and filled an 8 by 8 inch square pan, a 9-inch round pan, and a ramekin. Feel free to cut it back down to size if you don’t want to live off crumb cake for the foreseeable future.
Cake. Cherries. Crumbs.
Dessert … or breakfast … is served.Print
1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
5 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 cups milk (I used almond, use what you love)
1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
5 cups cherries, pitted (bing, rainier, sour – anything goes)
3 cups blueberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter your baking vessel. I used an 8 inch square, a 9 inch round, and a ramekin, but a 9 by 13 will do the trick too.
Make the topping. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, sugars, cinnamon, ginger, pepper, and salt. Once combined, stir in the butter until clumps form. Set aside.
Make the cake. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
In another large bowl, cream butter, oil, and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Alternately add the flour mixture and milk to the butter mixture, beginning and ending with the flour. Stir 1 cup of cherries and 1 cup of blueberries into the batter.
Spread the batter into the prepared pan(s), and top with remaining cherries and blueberries. Sprinkle with the topping and place in the oven. Bake about 1 hour and 15 minutes, until golden brown, bubbling from the fruit, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few crumbs. Cool completely in the pan or serve warm.
Cake may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag. Thaw at room temperature about an hour or in the microwave about 1 minute.
Recipe adapted from Tutti Dolci