The month of August is rapidly coming to an end and with it the summer. This time of year for me is mixed with memories of the birth of my son, of canning peaches, of puffy white clouds in a sea of beautiful clear blueness, of cooler nights and inevitable changes to come. I am consistently in the state of longing now for the sun to stay a bit longer. It’s like an annual very personal internal clock takes over when the hot filled days and warm evenings are closing in behind us.
I had all kinds of plans this month for so many recipes that I wanted to make from this cookbook. I thought about plans and how we have so many at any given time rolling around in our minds. But then life happens and we are derailed; some come to fruition and others get put aside or forgotten. Abby and I had so many plans. We always planned things. We loved plans. We both were doers and we loved executing and sharing plans. I miss sharing mine with her and I miss hearing of hers. No one was more excited and passionate about plans than Abby. She made you feel that anything was possible. And with her, it was.
Streusel and Strudel (our tree planter nicknames)
Ingredients: Cake: 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup sugar, 2 eggs, 2.5 cups cake flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1.5 teaspoons baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1.5 cups sour cream with 1 teaspoon vanilla stirred in. Streusel topping: 1 cup chopped walnuts, 1/2 brown sugar, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 2 tablespoons cocoa, 2 tablespoons butter
To make the Streusel: Combine the list of ingredients and work with your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
To make the coffee cake: Preheat oven to 350F. Cream together the butter and sugar, add eggs one at at time. In a separate bowl sift the flour, soda, salt, powder. Add this to creamed mixture alternating with sour cream, making three additions and stirring well after each one. Spread half of the batter into a buttered tube pan and sprinkle with half of the streusel. Spread the rest of the batter and remaining streusel. Bake for about 45 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.