Cute Little Creamy Jammy Coffee Cakes
Moms are so accustomed to sharing everything — their food, favorite sweater, the family car, and most of all, their time.
So, this Mother’s Day, gift her something that she can call her very own, something she can indulge in selfishly, thoroughly, and completely.
I’m talking “Creamy Jammy Coffee Cakes.”
Bigger than a standard muffin but clearly smaller than a full-on cake that requires slicing, these individual coffee cakes are the perfect size to feel pampered with.
The recipe is from “100 Morning Treats” (Chronicle Books), of which I received a review copy. It’s by Sarah Kieffer, the Minneapolis creator of the award-winning The Vanilla Bean Blog, and the baker who popularized the famed pan-banging, cookie-baking technique.
This fun book is filled with all manner of homey treats to enjoy for breakfast, brunch, and beyond. You’ll fall for everything from “White Chocolate and Fig Pound Cake,” “Giant Carrot Cake Cinnamon Roll,” and “Brioche Bagels” to “Sheet Pan Danish” and “Cheesy Croissant Casserole.”
These coffee cakes are like parfaits in that they are built upon layers. The bottom layer is a tender cake that gets added moistness from sour cream and buttermilk. Think of it as like the perfect cupcake with its fluffy texture.
The next layer is a spoonful or two of jam or lemon curd. You can use your favorite store-bought variety or any homemade you have on hand. If you wanted to get super decadent, Nutella could probably be an option, too.
Over all that goes a cream cheese filling, which is an easy mix of cream cheese, sugar, and an egg whipped up in a mixer.
Finally, the tops get strewn with streusel that’s really just some of the sugar-flour-butter mixture that you set aside before using the rest in the cake batter.
The recipe is designed for eight 4-inch cake pans. If like me, you don’t have those, you can use jumbo muffin tins like I did. Just grease them well and proceed with the recipe.
I found that the recipe yielded 10 jumbo muffins. With the 4-inch cake pans, the recipe instructs to bake for 26 to 32 minutes. Jumbo muffin tins are slightly smaller, but I found that mine were done right around 26 minutes. So, be sure to check them earlier just in case.
Let them cool, then use a thin knife blade and the tines of a fork to carefully lift each one out of the muffin pan.
The cream cheese filling adds a nice tang in contrast to the sweetness of the jam or lemon curd layer. These sweet little cakes are indeed pretty sweet. So, definitely serve them to mom with her favorite coffee or tea — and watch her glee in enjoying something all to herself for once.
Creamy Jammy Coffee Cakes
(Makes eight 4-inch cakes or 10 jumbo muffins)
3/4 cup sour cream, at room temperature
1/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks), unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup jam or lemon curd
For cream cheese filling:
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
For the cake: Position an oven rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease eight 4-inch cake pans or springform pans, and line the bottoms with parchment. Or grease 10 jumbo muffin tin cups. In a medium bowl or liquid measuring cup, whisk together the sour cream, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla. In the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with a paddle, combine the flour and granulated sugar on low speed. Add the butter, one piece at a time, beating until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Remove 1 cup of the mixture and set it aside in a small bowl.
With the mixer on low speed, beat in the baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the wet ingredients and mix until incorporated, about 30 seconds. Remove the bowl from the mixer. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and use a spatula to mix the batter a few more times. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared pans and smooth the tops with an offset spatula or back of a spoon. Spread 2 tablespoons of jam evenly over the cake batter in each pan. (Note: If using jumbo muffin tins, fill each cavity a quarter of the way with batter, and spread only 1 tablespoon of jam on each one.)
For the filling: In the stand mixer bowl in which you mixed the cake batter, beat together the cream cheese and granulated sugar on low speed until smooth and creamy. Add the egg and mix until incorporated, scraping down the sides as needed. Divide the cream cheese mixer among the pans and smooth the tops with an offset spatula or back of a spoon. Divide the reserved flour-butter mixture among the pans, sprinkling it evenly over the tops. Tap the pans gently on the counter twice to help get rid of any air bubbles.
Place the cake pans on a large sheet pan and bake until golden brown and a wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs, rotating the pan halfway through baking, 26 to 32 minutes. (Note: If using jumbo muffin tins, the cakes may be done faster, in about 24 to 26 minutes.) Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let the cakes cool until barely warm or at room temperature. Remove the cakes from their pans and serve. (Note: If you baked them in a jumbo muffin tin, use the thin blade of a knife or fork tines to carefully lift each cake out.) Alternately, the cakes can be covered in plastic wrap after cooling and stored in the refrigerator overnight.
Adapted from “100 Morning Treats” by Sarah Kieffer
More Sarah Kieffer Recipes to Enjoy: Panettone Scones