Sunday, March 13, 2011

Grandma Joe's Sour Cream Coffee Cake

It's been cold and rainy here for the last few days.  It's a good day to stay inside and bake something sweet and warm and I have the perfect treat!

Several years ago my family headed south to Florida to visit Mickey Mouse, a few Disney princesses and my husband's two Grandmothers (who could have been Disney princesses in their youth!)

My husband's Grandmas were former New Yorkers who were spending their golden years in retirement homes in the 'Sunshine State'.

During our visit to Florida we often had dinner with Grandma Joe in her retirement home's lovely dining room.  We were treated like royalty as she led us through the dining room and paused at each table to introduce us to the other residents.

"This is my grandson and his family from Canada", Grandma Joe would explain to her friends.  When you're a teenager, having a car is status; when you're an octogenarian, having family who visit is most important - for lots of reasons.

Each night after dinner, we sat with Grandma Joe in her apartment and talked about her life as a younger woman.  All the while, our kids filled themselves with the Hershey Kisses and soft drinks she had brought in specially for them. 

On the last night of our vacation, Grandma Joe offered to let me search through her recipe boxes and take any recipes I wanted.  She was a serious baker in her day (from what I hear, she was thorough, efficient and accomplished in all areas of homemaking.)  Many recipe cards had already been passed along, but there were still a lot of dessert ones remaining. Perfect, if you ask me!

The recipe cards remained tucked away in my cupboard because I have a horrible habit of eating my own baking and when you're over 40, calories don't burn the way they used to!

Grandma Joe died this past September at the age of 92.  It gives me goosebumps to write about it, but for some reason, since then I have felt like following her recipes for cakes and cookies.

I suppose the recipes are a little old-fashioned, and there's no way any of it is low fat!  But, you've got to enjoy yourself....maybe have just a little piece.

I'm sure Grandma Joe never imagined her handwritten instructions to make sour cream coffee cake would end up on the internet.  She probably jotted the recipe down from memory, which is why I think the order of operations might be a bit off, so I have made adjustments in a couple of places.

As Grandma Joe would say: "Enjoy".

Sour Cream Coffee Cake (Excellent)

 Cake Ingredients:
1/2  cup     butter or margarine
2               eggs
1     cup     white sugar
2     cups    flour
1     tsp     baking powder
1     tsp     baking soda
1     tsp     vanilla
1     cup    sour cream (I used the high fat kind)

Filling Ingredients:
1   tsp or more cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (I used pecans instead)

Filling: Combine cinnamon, brown sugar and nuts in a bowl and set aside.

Cake: Cream butter or margarine.  Add white sugar and eggs.  Add in vanilla and sour cream. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and add to the creamed mixture.

Pour half of the batter into a greased and floured tube or bundt pan. Sprinkle on half of the filling mixture. Layer rest of the cake batter and top with the remaining sugar and nut mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes.

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