Here most of my friends and I are three weeks out of exams, however today marks the real start of summer in my town. If alarm clocks went off this morning, it was for the sole purpose of beating the crowds at the amusement park or for getting the best chairs at the neighborhood pool. With school out, a fresh and hectic summer energy has taken over town. Kids blindly run across streets to the closest lemonade stand, moms suffer mild panic attacks due to their loss of typical 8:15-3:15 daycare, and the borderline sketchy-looking American flag painted ice-cream truck plays Yankee Doodle on repeat as it drives up and down my street. Lifeguards now triple the quantity of boxes of popsicles on their grocery list and pretend like they don’t know the answers to the jokes on the sugar-dyed sticks so as to please their elementary school age guests. Lunches no longer must be tossed out the door to children running to flag down the bus two minutes after its designated departure time, and breakfast no longer needs to be that lone packet of string cheese sitting in the fridge because you overslept. In fact, instead of rushing out the door with coffee and Nutrigrain in hand, treat yourself to actually sitting down to eat breakfast. Maybe even throw in a newspaper. To complete this idyllic image, imagine yourself eating this Buttermilk Apple Coffee Cake while leisurely sipping organic tea or fair trade coffee. Here is some more specific instruction so you can get crackin’ on making this imagination a reality:
Buttermilk-Apple Coffee Cake
Source: adapted from the recipe from The Best of Cooking Light 3
Yield: 8 servings; (Serving size: 1 wedge of cake).
Ingredients: Cake: 1 ½ cups thinly sliced peeled Granny Smith apple, 3 tablespoons brown sugar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, ½ tsp ground cinnamon, 1 cup all-purpose flour, ½ tsp baking soda, 1/8 tsp salt, 1/3 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons softened butter, 1 large egg, 1 tsp vanilla extract, ½ tsp almond extract, ½ cup low-fat buttermilk, cooking spray, 2 tablespoons sliced almonds; Glaze: ¼ cup sifted powdered sugar, 1 tsp low-fat buttermilk, ¼ tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- To prepare the cake, combine the first 4 ingredients in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook 5 minutes or until syrupy, stirring frequently; cool.
- Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Combine granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended; add egg and extracts, beating well. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; beat well after each addition.
- Spoon the batter into an 8-inch round cake pan coated with cooking spray. Arrange apple mixture over cake; top with almonds. Bake at 350º for 24-25 minutes or until cake begins to pull away from sides of pan. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Quickly invert cake onto wire rack. Then invert onto a serving plate.
- To prepare glaze, combine powdered sugar, 1 tsp buttermilk, and ¼ tsp vanilla in a small bowl; stir with a whisk. Drizzle glaze over cake. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Notes: I recommend doubling the glaze. Photos show glaze doubled.
Nutritional Information: 185 calories (24% from fat), 5g fat, 3.4g protein, 31.8g carb, 1g fiber, 35mg chol, 1mg iron, 162mg sodium, 36mg calc.