I have been completely under estimating coffee cake these past few years. If I am in the mood for a sweet and decadent breakfast I would much rather have a donut, croissant, or muffin. And what is so exciting about a fluffy cake topped with a generous helping of sweet and crunchy streusel? Um, how about everything!? Okay, it may not be exciting, but boy is it delicious! Sometimes I forget that simplicity can still be delicious.
To me, the best part of any coffee cake is the super crumbly, crunchy, sweet, and salty topping. There isn’t really a trick to streusel topping, you can just about as much sugar, cinnamon, and salt you want to suite your taste. Except I would recommend that you don’t forget the flour, like I did in my first batch of muffins. The flour holds together the little crumbles of streusel so they stay in tact on top of the muffin. Without the flour, my first batch just melted down into the muffin. Don’t get me wrong, it was still delicious, but not really coffee cake material. On the second round I remembered the flour and the streusel turned out perfectly!
I know I have talked a lot about the the topping, but it is the contrast with the light and spongy cake beneath that makes it such a classic. I like to lightly season my cake with a bit of cinnamon and nutmeg to compliment the top.
You could definitely make this in a square pan as a cake and it would be just as good. But I like the muffin size because it is so much easier to transport (since I bring most of my baked goods to work) and I think the topping to cake ratio is a bit better since it doesn’t all fall off when you cut into it.
Buttery, sweet, and delicious. Perfect to accompany your morning cup of coffee.