This raspberry pistachio cream cheese coffee cake would make a great Christmas morning treat. Well, not only Christmas morning, but an anytime coffee cake. But, with the red and green from raspberry preserves and pistachio nuts, I think this coffee cake suits Christmas morning very well; plus, it’s simple and quick to put together!
At first, I wanted to post some lemon raspberry cupcakes with honey mascarpone frosting, but that does not conjure up Christmas to me; not even a little bit! I don’t think lemon and Christmas jibe, (not counting some awesome meyer lemon bars that made their way into a cookie exchange last week). Those will come later!
That being said, I under baked this coffee cake, which I mention two more times in this entry, so don’t let the look of it keep you from making it. The center is not supposed to ‘schlump’ like it does in my photos. I accidentally under baked it by setting my timer 20 minutes short. It was one of those slow brain mornings where you don’t double check because you think you’ve got it right in your head. I didn’t realize this until hours later, so unfortunately, it was too late to fix.
Like I’ve said many times on this blog; I don’t do do-overs. If I mess up, you’re going to see it messed up, and that will prevent the slight chance of you messing up!
Anyway, years ago, there was a baking show on PBS called Mrs. Field’s Great American Desserts. Having been a huge fan of Mrs. Field’s cookies at the malls, I was ready for each show, spiral notebook and pen in hand (back then, you couldn’t get the recipes off PBS online). For some reason, a Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake was the only recipe that stood out to me, and the page with the scribble scrabble recipe was well-worn before its time. When I first started making this coffee cake, I didn’t even have a springform pan, so I would use a deep 10-inch copper saute pan to bake it in. It made quite a pretty presentation, but one could break their back carrying it to the table.
Here’s the problem, I cannot find that spiral notebook anywhere, so I searched online for “Mrs. Field’s Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake”, using Google, Yahoo..any search engine to find anything. I found many recipes almost exactly like it (from my recollection) but they’re all attributed to other sources ; one, a Sutter Home Napa Valley Cookbook, two, a site called Mrs. Miller’s Noodles, who also happen to sell jams, as in a jam to top the cake. After briefly giving up, I decided to try to make something similar, one I could call my own.
I know it’s tough to nail down recipes and call them your own, but Mrs. Field’s is a copyright maven, right? She sold her amazing cookie company to some other company for millions, who in turn; turned them into cheap, flat artificial tasting, supermarket cookies that in no way taste like or resemble those huge, gooey, chunky cookies you used to get at the malls.
To digress for a moment, oh, how awesome it was to pick up a bag of those cookies, warm out of the oven, after clothes shopping, then eating them out of the bag on the drive home.
So, you’d think this might tick her off a little, right? Apparently not, so I guess she doesn’t care about everyone and their brother publishing her recipe as their own, and in the case of the cookies, turning them into generic supermarket brand type cookies. It makes me sad because I like her a lot.
In any event, I didn’t have to try and emulate Debi’s coffee cake as I remembered it because I think I found the recipe, or at least something very close to it. However, I took the recipe and made it a little more festive by using bright green shelled pistachio’s from Oh Nuts.com, instead of the almonds. Oh Nuts and I go back about a year or so when they sent me some free goodies for holiday baking after seeing me complain in this post about tearing my fingernails and raw fingertips for days after shelling 2 lbs of pistachios. They saved my fingers by sending me their beautiful, bright green, shelled pistachio nuts, and when I was offered two products again, naturally, a bag of shelled pistachios was one I chose.
By the way, you’ve got to see their site. They have everything..from soup to nuts. OK, no soup, but not just nuts; loads of candy, dried fruits, nut flours etc. Pop by, as there’s still time to order in time for your holiday baking! Part of this giveaway is a $25.00 gift certificate to Oh Nuts, which Sam Feferkorn, of Oh Nuts, generously provided!
So, when playing around with this coffee cake, I added a layer of cinnamon sugar on top of the coffee cake batter. I did this because, how can you not have any cinnamon in a coffee cake? This gave the cake a gooey, cinnamon roll like strip running beneath the cheesecake layer. Let’s just say that there’s always a way to improve on something, no matter how fantastic it already is, without overkill. But, you can omit the cinnamon sugar layer since the coffee cake is still fabulous without it.
For the jam topping, I used Bonne Maman raspberry preserves. Cecile from Bonne Maman was kind of enough to send me six 13-ounce jars of a variety of preserves and jellies. Guess what? This offer has been extended to one of my readers! You can win six 13-ounce jars of Bonne Maman preserves and jellies, in a variety of flavors, which include fig, wild blueberry, apricot, plum, raspberry, orange etc.. They’re all pure fruity heaven, and the jars are so pretty, just like you made and canned them yourself. You can see all their jellies and preserves HERE These jars are big enough to last you well past your holiday baking!
So, now we have a red (the raspberry preserves) and green (the pistachios) creamy, crumbly, fruity, nutty, moist and delicious Christmas coffee cake! Not to mention, the pistachios add another dimension, especially if they’re salted and toasted.
Now to the part where I effed up this coffee cake.
As I mentioned in the first paragraph, my coffee cake isn’t ‘gooey’ on purpose.; it was accidentally underbaked, mistakenly taken out 20 minutes early. It was still not quite set in the middle, as you can see in the photos, but we kind of liked it this way. It schlumps when cut, so it’s been dubbed the ‘schlump’ cake from hereon in, and now we purposely under bake it slightly on occasion. Below is how it should look when baked fully and with almonds instead of pistachios;
Photo by Marg (CaymanDesigns)
Much prettier than my coffee cake, huh? I had to show you the coffee cake as it should look so my photos of the schlumpy, under-baked coffee cake wouldn’t deter you from making it, because it is out-of-this-world delicious!
One final little factoid, this coffee cake uses a method similar to a Cowboy Coffee Cake, where some of the flour, sugar, butter mixture from the cake is set aside to use as a streusel topping, which I always loved; less work, less bowls, but in this case, it’s in reverse. Some of the streusel mixture is set aside for the cake. Cool, huh?
Finally, I want to give a LOUD shout out to Christina Banner, one of the most talented Gingerbread House builders I’ve ever seen. Last year she sent me a copy of her amazing book ‘How to Build a Gingerbread House’, for review. I wanted to accompany that review with a gingerbread house built from her book. I never got around to it, so I was going to build one this Christmas. Unfortunately, a lot of things kept me from taking the time to do it, so I’m going to try and get one in for Valentine’s Day or Easter, as her book has Gingerbread Houses for every holiday and occasion! Until I do, I highly recommend you pick up a copy of her book ‘How to Build a Gingerbread House’. Her recipes and directions are easy to follow, and all ingredients are easily found..not to mention, the houses are beautiful!
To Enter the Giveaway to win a Bonne Maman 6-pack variety of fruit preserves and jellies and a $25.00 gift certificate to use at Oh Nuts.com, check out the Bonne Maman and Oh Nuts sites, and leave a comment telling me what your favorite flavor jam, jelly or preserve is and your favorite nut to use in baking. For extra entries, you can do all or any of the following, leaving a separate comment for each thing you do; 1. Subscribe to Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives by email or RSS feed 2. Follow @parsleynsage on Twitter (so you can be alerted to upcoming giveaways immediately) 3. Like Bonne Maman on Facebook. 4. Like OhNuts on Facebook. 5. Follow OhNuts on Twitter 6. Tweet this giveaway – I entered to win six 13 oz jars Fruit Preserves & a $25 gift coupon from @OhNuts via @parsleynsage. Leave comment to enter! http://bit.ly/tfqDOs This giveaway will end December 27, 2011. The winner will be chosen using random.org, on the 27th. If the winner does not respond within two days, another winner will be chosen. Good luck!
Raspberry Pistachio Cream Cheese Coffee Cake
We tried this with raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries for a triple berry cream cheese coffee cake!
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup sugar
- ¾ cup cold butter, cubed
- Crumb mixture from above, minus 1 cup
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup sour cream
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1½ teaspoons almond extract
- 2 tablespoons of cinnamon sugar* (optional)
- 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1 egg
- ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons raspberry jam or preserves
- 1 cup reserved crumb mixture
- ½ cup slivered almonds or chopped salted pistachios
- Make the crumb mixture. In a large bowl, combine flour and sugar. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Remove 1 cup and set aside for the topping. Lightly grease a 9-inch springform pan.
- To the remaining crumbs add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, sour cream, egg and almond extract and mix well. Spread in the bottom and 2 inches up the sides of the greased springform pan. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of cinnamon sugar over batter, if using.
- For the filling, beat the cream cheese, sugar and egg in a small bowl until smooth. Spoon over batter. Top with raspberry jam and spread gently and evenly over cream cheese.
- Mix the reserved 1 cup of crumb mixture with the sliced almonds OR chopped salted pistachios. Sprinkle evenly on top of raspberry layer. Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Place in oven and Bake at 350 F for 55-60 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen and cool completely on a wire rack.. Store in the refrigerator.