Saturday, September 10, 2011

Jam Cake with Peanut Streusel

I love this coffee cake for two reasons.  First, it's a great way to use up jam mishaps (or any extra jam you have on hand).  In my case, I had some sour cherry jam that tasted yummy but totally failed to set up properly due to me reading the Certo instructions incorrectly.  This was the perfect use for it - the liquid-y nature of the jam actually made it easier to spread onto the cake batter, and the flavor came through really well.  If you have a particularly thick jam, you might want to warm it up a bit before trying to spread it on the cake batter, which is on the thick side.

Second, it has really unique flavors.  I'd never had peanut streusel before, but it was a totally genius topping!  Flavored with fragrant orange zest, the streusel added something really special and new to the coffee cake.  I could also see subbing in lemon or lime zest to complement whichever flavor of jam you use.  And, of course, you could use any sort of nut here - but do try this with peanuts because the result is unusual and delicious!  Overall, the cake was moist and tasty and stayed fresh for a couple of days wrapped in plastic (which is all it took us to consume it!).  It was great for breakfast and just snacking throughout the day - the recipe is definitely a keeper.

Jam Cake with Peanut Streusel (from Food Network Magazine)
Makes one 9-inch square coffee cake

For the Streusel:
3 T unsalted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup unsalted roasted peanuts
2 tsp grated orange zest
1 tsp vanilla extract

For the Cake:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 cup jam or preserves

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch-square baking pan. Line with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides. Lightly butter the paper or spray with oil.
2. Make the streusel.  Combine the butter, sugar, peanuts, orange zest and vanilla in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are coarsely chopped.
3. Make the cake: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Beat the butter and sugar in a separate bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing between each, and then beat on medium speed until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Reduce the speed to low. Add the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the sour cream, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape down the bowl and finish mixing by hand (do not overmix).
4. Pour half of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Sprinkle with half of the streusel and dollop with half of the jam. Spread the remaining batter on top. Sprinkle with the remaining streusel and top with the remaining jam.
5. Place the baking pan on a larger sheet pan to catch any drips.  Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Transfer the pan to a rack and let the cake cool completely, then lift out the cake by the parchment paper and cut into squares.


  1. Hi Sara, I couldn't find your email address anywhere. But, I wanted to let you know that you won the mixing bowl cover from the Cupcake Project giveaway! Congrats! Just email me your full mailing address at to claim your prize. Oh - and that jam cake looks amazing!

  2. Sounds terrific, i love the idea of a peanut strudel!

  3. Hi, found you on SE but had to do a google search for your recipe. I thought it had coconut on it until I read the recipe, but saw it doesn't. Wouldn't that be a great addition? I'm gonna try it. Hope that the hour in the oven doesn't blacken it.

  4. @ Anon - Thanks! I bet coconut would be great...if you're worried about it getting too brown in the oven, you could try adding it in the middle layer or perhaps sprinkling it on top halfway through baking.

  5. I've had peanut butter and jam bars, but not a cake. Yours looks so tasty, I'm going to have to try it!

  6. This sounds delicious. What a fun treat!