Monday, May 21, 2012

Georgia Pecan Coffee Cake

This recipe makes me giggle.  I actually buy my pecans from a company in Alabama which I drive by on my way to Florida, but I make the cake in Georgia so I guess that's okay.  Also, like many coffee cake recipes it originally called for sour cream but I seldom have that on hand while I often have fat free or low fat greek yogurt, turns out that works perfectly.  
I made it for the Mavens recently and they all seemed to like it so I thought I'd share it with you.  I hope you like it too!

Georgia Pecan Coffee Cake
2 c. flour
1/2 t. salt
1 T. baking powder
1 c. butter, softened but not melted
1 c. greek yogurt
1.5 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 T. vanilla extract

Streusel Topping:
1 c. pecans 
1 t. ground cinnamon
2 T. butter

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a 9x13 inch pan with aluminum foil, and lightly grease with vegetable oil or cooking spray. 
  2. Prepare a pan, the original recipe called for a 9x13 but I prefer my 8x11 which happens to be pottery rather than metal.  I butter it well and set it aside.  
  3. Put the pecans on a cookie sheet and toast them lightly while getting ingredients together.  Don't let them toast too much, this step is just to keep them well textured after being mixed in the streusel.  If you toast too much then they will burn while baking later on.  Take them out of the oven (I used my toaster oven) and let them cool a bit before chopping a bit, big pieces are nice for this cake.  This whole step takes less then 10 minutes and make a good difference in the quality of your cake.  Mix with brown sugar, cinnamon and melted butter and set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl dry whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. 
  5. In a large bowl use a mixer to cream the butter until light. Add the greek yogurt and mix to combine well and then beat in sugar. Add the eggs one at a time and then the vanilla.  Without the mixer add the dry ingredients, folding it in to combine as quickly as possible.  Pour the batter into the pan.  
  6. I find it's easiest to apply the streusel by hand to make it even across the cake.  Here's where using a slightly smaller pan makes for a better layer of topping.  
  7. The original recipe called for baking 30-35 minutes, but in an even slightly smaller pan it takes about 45 minutes.  Check for doneness by inserting a knife into the center of the cake and make sure it is cooked all the way to the center.  Let it cool 15-30 before cutting into pieces and serve.