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The cursive writing at the top of the tattered 3×5 card says, “Cafe Beaujolais’ Coffeecake,” but I’ve only known it as delicious.
This classic coffee cake recipe comes from my mother-in-law, Maria, who grew up in Los Angeles. Curiously, the Los Angeles Times has this Coffeecake recipe in their database. There are similarities, and indeed, my mother-in-law is a lifelong LA Times subscriber. On careful inspection, however, a few alterations are revealed and you can see she’s made it her own. But still no actual coffee in the ingredients.
This is a time-tested breakfast favorite in my family, and I hope it becomes one in yours as well. For added instruction and entertainment, watch the Top Secret Coffee Cake Video!
Ingredients for Top Secret Coffee Cake:
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ginger
3/4 cup corn oil
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
NOTES: This recipe makes one 13 x 9″ pan. The original Cafe Beaujolais’ Coffeecake calls for one cup sliced almonds added to the crumb topping mixture. Maria has always omitted the almonds. Serves 8-10.
Mix together 2 1/4 cups flour, white and brown sugars, 1 tsp cinnamon, salt and ginger.
Blend in oil until well combined. Remove 3/4 cup of mixture and set aside.
To remaining flour mix add baking soda, baking powder, egg and buttermilk. Blend until smooth.
Pour into greased 13×9″ pan.
To 3/4 cup reserved mix, add 1/4 cup flour and 1 tsp cinnamon.
Sprinkle over batter and bake in a 350 (F) oven for 35-40 minutes.
Serve warm or at room temperature. This coffee cake freezes well.
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