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Find your inner peace with coffee cake

PICTURE a lazy Sunday morning . . . sun shining, birds chirping, coffee brewing, and the smell of a coffee cake baking. Now that's my idea of guided meditation.

PICTURE a lazy Sunday morning . . . sun shining, birds chirping, coffee brewing, and the smell of a coffee cake baking.

Now that's my idea of guided meditation. Whether it's the intoxicating scent of cinnamon wafting through the house or mouthwatering hints of blueberry, rhubarb or apple, I bet you won't have to call anybody twice for breakfast. These cakes are meant to be rich, sinful, once-in-a-while treats, so don't be put off by the decadent ingredients. Have a modestly-sized piece and enjoy every crumb.

Coffee cakes are best eaten the day they're made (preferably when they're still warm from the oven); in the (unlikely) event there are leftovers, wrap them loosely in foil and reheat at 350 degrees until warm - microwaving tends to make the cake tough.



3 cups sliced fresh rhubarb (1-inch pieces)

2 pints fresh strawberries, mashed

2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 cup sugar

1 ?3 cup cornstarch


3 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

¼ tsp salt

1 cup butter, cut into small pieces

1½ cups buttermilk

2 large eggs

1 tsp vanilla


¼ cup butter

¾ cup all-purpose flour

¾ cup sugar

In a large saucepan combine the rhubarb, strawberries and lemon juice. Cover and cook over medium heat for about five minutes. Combine the sugar and cornstarch; stir into strawberry mixture and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In a separate bowl beat together buttermilk, eggs and vanilla; stir into crumb mixture. Spread half of the batter into a greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan; carefully spread the filling over the batter, then drop the remaining batter evenly over the filling with a tablespoon.

For the topping, melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in flour and sugar until mixture is crumbly, then sprinkle over batter. Place a large piece of foil on the oven rack below the pan to catch any fruit juice that may boil over. Bake cake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes or until it is done (cake is golden brown and top springs back when pressed gently with finger). Cool cake in the pan on a rack. Makes 12 servings.



½ cup plus 2 tsp butter 1½ cups packed light brown sugar

2 large eggs

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp salt

1 cup sour cream

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups peeled, cored and chopped apples (Golden Delicious are a good choice)

Crumble Topping:

½ cup packed light brown sugar

½ cup all-purpose flour

½ tsp cinnamon

4 Tbsp butter, softened


½ cup packed light brown


½ tsp vanilla

2 Tbsp water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees; lightly grease a 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish with the 2 tsp of butter. Cake: In a large bowl cream together the ½ cup of butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition; beat in vanilla. In a separate bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add to the wet ingredients alternately with the sour cream; fold in the apples. Pour into the prepared pan, spreading out to the edges. Topping: Combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon and butter in a medium bowl and mix until it resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over the batter.

Bake cake until golden brown and set, about 35-40 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes.

Glaze: Mix all glaze ingredients together until smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the cake and let it set slightly. Serve the cake warm. Makes 12 servings.


½ cup butter, softened

2 ?3 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder ¼ tsp salt

2 ?3 cup milk with 1 tsp vanilla stirred in

1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (do not thaw)

¼ cup fresh lemon juice

1 tsp grated lemon zest

½ cup icing sugar

3 Tbsp granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees; grease a 9x9-inch glass baking dish. Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl and beat in the eggs one at a time. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the butter mixture alternately with the milk/ vanilla, then gently fold in the blueberries. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for approximately 40 minutes or until golden brown and set. Remove cake from oven and let cool slightly on a rack. Meanwhile, turn on oven broiler. Mix the lemon juice and rind with the icing sugar and pour the mixture evenly over the cake; sprinkle with the 3 Tbsp sugar. Place the cake under the broiler until the sugar bubbles - watch carefully to prevent burning! Remove from oven and let cool in pan on a wire rack.

Makes six servings.