I left the house bright and early, with self-gratification and coccole (cuddles) on my mind. After a 30 minute jog and an invigorating apricot body scrub, I sashayed into the Thai day spa for a herbal facial and a 90-minute Ayurvedic massage.
Coming back home, floating on cloud 9, I left all tensions behind and… baked streusel. The beauty treatment is a 360° affair, is it not?
While E. helped by grinding the roast beans for my steaming demitasse of afternoon espresso, I whisked today’s ultimate merenda reward: blueberry coffee cake.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
A pinch of salt
200 g (1 cup) granulated sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
100 gr (1/2 cup) hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
100 gr (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, plus more for greasing (softened)
3 small eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
200 g (1 cup) plain yogurt
200 g (1 cup) fresh blueberries (OK, thaw the frozen kind)
2 large eggs
For the streusel topping:
100 g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
50 g (1/4 cup) butter, cold and cut into small pieces
Preheat oven to 180° C (356° F).
Grease a 9-inch square cake pan with butter and dust it with flour.
Whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.
In a large bowl, stir together the granulated sugar, cinnamon and hazelnuts. Beat in the butter at medium speed bursts until fluffy. If necessary, use the back of a spoon to press out any lumps. Break in the eggs, one at a time, beating until fully combined, and then finally stir in the vanilla and yogurt.
Add the flour mixture in 2 batches, stirring until just combined (over-stirring will make the batter harden), and fold in half the blueberries.
Spread half of the batter into the prepared pan, it will be quite sticky and messy, you can use a silicone spatula to make things easier. Sprinkle the nut mixture over the batter and top with the remaining blueberries. Spoon the rest of the batter into the pan, smoothing the top.
Make the streusel topping by mixing together flour and sugar in a bowl, rubbing the butter into the flour mixture with your fingers to form coarse blibby crumbs. Sprinkle these over the cake and bake until a dry spaghetti strand (or a toothpick) inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 to 40 minutes.
Let the cake cool slightly while you brew your coffee, and then unmold. Allow it to cool completely on a wire rack (I hardly ever obey this last instruction) before cutting into 2-inch squares and applying to face.