Cranberry Orange Crumb Cake

I usually bake from scratch, but sometimes you’re just short on time and want to use some type of mix to save a little bit of time. I’m a huge fan of King Arthur Flour’s mixes. If you looked in my pantry you’d see that I always have a couple of different mixes on hand. I had a box of the Cranberry Orange Scone Mix, but I wasn’t really in the mood for a scone.  I love that King Arthur Flour gives you instructions on how to make other things with their mixes. So I had the scone mix, but I was able to use it for either pancakes, muffins, bread, coffee cake or shortcakes. How cool is that? They call it Scone Mix Magic.

So I decided to make some Coffee Cake. You know I’m a sucker for a crumb topping. This was so easy and simple to make, yet so delicious and flavorful. You’ll definitely want to have some of these mixes on hand for when you want something really good for breakfast. [Read more…]

Buttermilk French Toast

I love breakfast. I love brunch. I love breakfast for dinner. I can eat breakfast foods any time of the day. Midnight, 9am, 1pm, 6pm, and then we’re right back at midnight again. I feel like breakfast foods always involve a lot of clean-up, but let me tell you it’s definitely worth it. We love to have French Toast and Bacon for dinner.

I have my go-to French Toast recipe, but I wanted to switch things up a bit.  I had some Buttermilk in the fridge that I didn’t want to go to waste. I knew I could use that in place of my regular milk. And I have an unhealthy obsession with brown sugar. So I decide to try something a little different figuring if it was good I’d have another awesome recipe in my arsenal.

Buttermilk French Toast


  • 1 1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar (light brown sugar would be fine too)
  • 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (ground nutmeg works fine too)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or vanilla bean paste (both work fine - sometimes I do half and half)
  • 12 (1/2-inch-thick) slices challah
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided


  1. Preheat oven to 200°F. But if you're like me and are cooking bacon in the oven, 400 degrees is fine. It won't be in the oven all that long anyway.
  2. Whisk together buttermilk, eggs, brown sugar, flour, vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt in a bowl. So pretty much whisk everything together except for the bread!
  3. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoon butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until foam subsides.
  4. One by one, dip each slice of challah in the buttermilk/egg mixture coating it entirely. Don't let it sit in there for too long. I put one side in there, flip it over and dip the other side, and then hold it above the bowl to let the excess drip off.
  5. Transfer the bread into the skillet and cook, turning once, until it's a nice golden brown color, about 3 minutes total. Transfer to a large shallow baking pan and keep warm in oven. Cook remaining bread in 2 batches, adding 1 1/2 tablespoon butter between batches.
  6. Serve with warm maple syrup.


Adapted from this recipe.

So needless to say, this French Toast was phenomenal. I thought that the flour gave the buttermilk/egg mixture a better consistency. And the nutmeg – I don’t know about you, but I LOVE freshly grated nutmeg. It just takes everything to the next level. If you don’t have any, invest in some. It’s pretty inexpensive and the taste is amazing. I get mine from my favorite spice store – Penzeys!


I love maple syrup. The more, the better.


And bacon. You can’t have French Toast without Bacon!

What’s your favorite breakfast food?

Pumpkin Pie Biscotti


I think that Biscotti is that perfect thing to take on-the-go to eat for breakfast with a good cup of coffee. I love to take some Biscotti to work with me in the morning. It goes so well with either coffee or tea, and I think the flavors are even better along side a good cup of joe.

Since I love fall, I thought that Pumpkin Pie Biscotti would be the perfect thing to make that was quick and easy to eat in the mornings. I love a good coffee cake. Don’t get me wrong. But Biscotti holds a special place in my heart. There are so many different flavors you can make that it never gets boring.

You don’t need one, but I bought this Biscotti pan and I absolutely love it. It makes it just that much easier to make Homemade Biscotti. I don’t have to worry about anything – I just throw the dough in there and bake! It’s perfect.

[Read more…]

Iced Pumpkin Coffee Cake

Cover-Pumpkin-Coffee-Cake-Piece-text So I’ve always been a huge coffee cake fan. I just love that crumb topping. There’s just something about it that gets me every time. My favorite all-time coffee cake recipe is for New York Style Crumb Cake.  The more crumb topping on the coffee cake, the better. And it’s piled high! So my go-to recipe has always been the one I posted above. How can you go wrong?

Now that Fall is approaching and I’m getting into Pumpkin mode, I figured I should try making a Pumpkin Coffee Cake. Pumpkin + Coffee Cake = YUM. Am I right?  And can we talk about the drizzle on top? I love it. I’m quite confident that I go overboard, but I don’t even care. And my other half isn’t fond of the drizzle. What? I didn’t know that was possible. He loved the pumpkin coffee cake, but he didn’t care for the drizzle. It just doesn’t compute! So anyway, that just meant more for me. And more for my coworkers, since I ended up taking most of it to work with me. While I’d love to sit and eat myself into a pumpkin coffee cake coma, I just can’t do that to myself. I’d rather put myself into a buttercream frosting coma. LOL!

What kind food coma would you want to be in? [Read more…]

New York-Style Crumb Cake

I don’t know about you, but I love baked goods. Danishes, Coffee Cake, Crumb Cake, Cinnamon Rolls. You name it, I probably love it. When I find a recipe for something that I love, I hold onto it and it’s always my go-to recipe. Up until now my favorite Coffee Cake recipe was from the Bisquick box. It was a recipe I could always count on and it always came out perfect. When I saw the recipe online for New York-Style Crumb Cake, I had a feeling this was going to be my new love.

I’m a huge fan of Cook’s Illustrated so I think very highly of their recipes. I love how they take the time to explain to you how they came up with the recipe, what didn’t work (and why), why they chose what they used, etc. I used to subscribe to upwards of 20 magazines, but I’ve since cut that down to only a couple magazines, with Cook’s Illustrated being one of them. If you haven’t seen it, check it out the next time you’re at the book store or the grocery store; I think you’ll love it!

This Crumb Cake is absolutely amazing. I can’t think of a bad thing to say about it. The cake was perfect – nice and moist. The topping was plentiful. It’s a great recipe that will be my go-to Crumb Cake recipe from now on. It’s the perfect addition to brunch! I will be taking it for breakfast this week…if it lasts that long!

New York-Style Crumb Cake
Source: saw it on smells like home ~ from Cooks’ Illustrated May 2007

Note: Don’t be tempted to substitute all-purpose flour for the cake flour, as doing so will make a dry, tough cake. If you can’t find buttermilk, you can substitute an equal amount of plain, low-fat yogurt. When topping the cake, take care to not push the crumbs into the batter. This recipe can be easily doubled and baked in a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. If doubling, increase the baking time to about 45 minutes. Cooled leftovers can be wrapped in plastic wrap and stored at room temperature for up to 2 days.

For the Crumb Topping:
1/3 cup granulated sugar (2 2/3 ounces)
1/3 cup dark brown sugar (2 2/3 ounces)
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon table salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), melted and still warm
1 3/4 cups cake flour (7 ounces)

For the Cake:
1 1/4 cups cake flour (5 ounces)
1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon table salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (3/4 stick), cut into 6 pieces, softened but still cool
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup buttermilk
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

To make the topping: Whisk sugars, cinnamon, salt, and butter in medium bowl to combine. Add flour and stir with rubber spatula or wooden spoon until mixture resembles thick, cohesive dough; set aside to cool to room temperature, 10 to 15 minutes.

To make the cake: Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Cut 16-inch length parchment paper or aluminum foil and fold lengthwise to 7-inch width. Spray 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and fit parchment into dish, pushing it into corners and up sides; allow excess to overhang edges of dish.

In bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt on low speed to combine. With mixer running at low speed, add butter one piece at a time; continue beating until mixture resembles moist crumbs, with no visible butter chunks remaining, 1 to 2 minutes. Add egg, yolk, vanilla, and buttermilk; beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute, scraping once if necessary.

Transfer batter to baking pan; using rubber spatula, spread batter into even layer.  Break apart crumb topping into large pea-sized pieces between your thumb, pointer, and middle fingers and spread in even layer over batter, beginning with edges and then working toward center. Bake until crumbs are golden and wooden skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on wire rack at least 30 minutes. Remove cake from pan by lifting parchment overhang. Dust with confectioners’ sugar just before serving.