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Kuchen, Buckle, Coffee Cake...They're One in the Same...ish

Have you ever tried a kuchen (German origin) or buckle (American)? Just old fashion terms to reference a coffee cake made with butter, cinnamon, and sugar. This recipe is always a big hit. If you're having a play group over and need a little something something with coffee for the adults, or perhaps want to freeze and microwave breakfast in a hurry, maybe for a snack at work...whatever. These mini cakes of fruity goodness are a real treat!

Traditionally, buckles are made in a 9 inch by 9 inch baking pan. I have developed this smaller version to cut down on the baking time. Time is always a premium when you are giving a one hour cooking class demo.

These are cute and light delectable fruit filled little cakes with loads of pecan streusel topping. People lick their fingers and thank me profusely for this wonderful dessert...while they exit the demonstration. Once you do your prep, they take no time to prepare with a shorter baking time. The aroma is intoxicating. I dare you to just eat one!

Mini Plum Buckles with Pecan Topping Makes about 24

For Topping:

1/2 cup packed brown sugar 1/2-cup all-purpose flour 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick) 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1 cup finely chopped pecans

For the batter:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 1-teaspoon kosher salt 2/3-cup milk 2 teaspoons pure vanilla 1 ½ cup sugar 12 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), at room temperature 4 large eggs, at room temperature 10 whole plums (duma), pitted and cut into large dice

Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Grease and line two muffins tins and set aside.

For the topping:

  1. With your fingertips, work brown sugar, flour, butter, cinnamon, and salt together until ingredients come together but some pea-size pieces remain.

  2. Stir in pecans

For the batter:

  1. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl until evenly combined; set aside.

  2. Whisk together milk and vanilla extract in a small bowl until evenly combined; set aside.

  3. Combine sugar and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium speed until light in colour and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, letting the first completely incorporate before adding the second.

  4. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and mix on low until just combined; scrape down the sides of the bowl. Pour in 1/2 of the milk mixture and mix on low until just incorporated. Repeat, alternating dry and wet ingredients and ending with dry ingredients, until completely incorporated.

  5. Remove the bowl from the mixer, fold the plums in until coated and evenly distributed, and turn into the prepared lined muffin tins .

  6. Sprinkle topping evenly over batter and bake until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean and the top is golden brown, about 20 minutes.

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