I've had a taste for blueberries lately, even though they're not nearly in season. I'm longing to do some berry picking this summer, and hope that we can find a local farm where we can do some of our own picking. But I get ahead of myself...
Blueberry pie is one of my dad's favorites, although my mom and I have never understood his love for frozen grocery store pies, which to me taste like they have way too much lard in the crust and an over-abundance of cornstarch in the blueberry filling. But, I'm not one to argue with people's food likes and dislikes, since I'm the girl who used to put ketchup on everything.
While shopping for roast beef at Tony's Meat Market over the weekend, I saw that they had blueberries on sale, and I couldn't resist buying some. My Sunday morning breakfast plan immediately changed from carrot cranberry bread to blueberry streusel coffee cake.
Although I usually prefer fresh, in-season ingredients, I find that frozen blueberries that have been thawed work very well for just about any recipe, which was my backup plan in case these fresh blueberries weren't any good, but they were just fine. I also have jars of Cranberry Blueberry Jam that I made and canned this winter, and I knew some of that jam would be making its way into the coffee cake.
Muffins, quick loaf breads and coffee cakes are really so similar, just taking different forms. And although many people would say they're no different from cake or cupcakes, they really can be if you don't go crazy with butter, oil and sugar.
For this coffee cake recipe, reduced-fat cream cheese took the place of the butter, non-fat Greek yogurt instead of sour cream added healthy protein, and lots of blueberries for natural sweetness.
The finished cake was so light, moist and crumbly, with a delicious ribbon of jam running through the batter and a crunchy oat topping. Not only did it taste amazing, but it looked so beautiful.
Blueberry Streusel Coffee Cake
- ¼ cup oats
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup light brown sugar, loosely packed
- 3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
coffee cake batter:
- 4 ounces low-fat cream cheese
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 6 ounces fresh or frozen (thawed) blueberries
- ½ cup blueberry jam or preserves (I used a homemade cranberry blueberry jam I had on hand)
Preheat the oven to 350. Line an 8- or 9-inch cake pan with foil, so that it is fitted tightly against the bottom and comes all the way up the sides with a few inches of overhang. Spray the foil thoroughly with non-stick spray. (Alternatively, you can just bake this in a square or round baking dish or a deep-dish pie pan, and just serve pieces straight from the pan. I baked it in a foil-lined cake pan so that I could lift it out to display on a cake pedestal.)
In a bowl, combine the oats, flour and brown sugar for the streusel topping. Sprinkle the cold pieces of butter over the mixture, then use your fingers to work the butter into the mixture until coarse and crumbly, but you can still see visible chunks of butter. Chill in the freezer while you prepare the batter.
In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth and blended, about 2-3 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then the vanilla, until thoroughly combined. Scrape the bowl down and add the yogurt on low speed.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg. With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture and stir just until moistened. Gently fold in the blueberries with a spatula. Batter will be very thick.
Spoon half the batter into the bottom of the prepared pan. Spread the jam (warm it for a few seconds in the microwave if it’s too thick) over the cake batter. Spoon the remainder of the batter over the jam and spread it out to the edges. Sprinkle the top with the chilled streusel topping.
Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes until golden brown on top and a sharp knife inserted in the center, all the way to the bottom, comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes, then grasp the foil overhang and carefully lift the cake out of the pan. Pull the foil away from the edges of the cake and let it cool for another 15 minutes on a wire rack. Using a large flat spatula or cake lifter, slide the spatula under the cake to lift it off the foil and onto a serving plate or cake pedestal.
Yields 8 servings
WW Points Plus Value: 9 points per serving
Adapted from Coffee Cake Muffins from Home Baked Comfort, a collection of Williams-Sonoma recipes by Kim Laidlaw