Friday, August 21, 2015

Sourdough Kuchin

Hello, and welcome back to Almacucia! Again I missed your birthday, so please except this delicious sourdough kuchen, made for the Sourdough Surprises August coffee cake bake-along, as your 3rd year celebration cake!

The original recipe, on which I based this sourdough version, was handed down to me by my friend and fellow pastry chef Curtis.  Not only was Curtis a talented baker, a successful entrepreneur, and an ace salesman (we always joked that he could sell sand to a camel), he was also a hell of a nice guy! Not to mention, funny. One of the kindest, most sharing and truly most gentle souls I've ever had the pleasure to spend time with.

After saying all that about this sweet guy you can bet I didn't want to ruin his recipe by tampering with it. But I went with my instincts and my feelings that Curtis would be behind me 110 percent in the interest of furthering our collective knowledge of the pastry arts.

Curtis's recipe is mighty tasty with it's sour cream batter swirled with a cinnamon and walnut filling. So it wasn't so much tampering as tweaking. All I really did was sub out some milk and flour for an equal amount of sourdough starter. I also added a handful of chopped dark chocolate to the filling because, chocolate!!!

I know Curtis would have loved the results. Mildly tangy with a moist crumb, laced with spicy nuts and chocolate. Slightly warm from the oven it is, in my humble opinion, not only the perfect coffee cake but also a great way to honor the coming together of old friends with newfangled internet sharing! 

Thank you Curtis, and thank you Sourdough Surprises!

sourdough kuchin

1/2 cup butter
1 cup raw cane sugar
2 eggs
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unbleached AP flour 
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
3/4 cup sourdough starter (discard is fine)

1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup chopped dark chocolate
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2-3 tablespoons raw cane sugar
2-3 tablespoons brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 4 quart (roughly 9x9) baking dish, set aside. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each and scraping the bowl as necessary. Add vanilla extract.

Whisk together flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add to butter mixture, alternately with sour cream and starter, in about two additions, mixing well after each addition.

Combine all the ingredients for the filling in a medium bowl. Pour half the batter into prepared baking dish, sprinkle with half of the filling. Pour in the remaining batter and carefully spread it over the filling. Top with remaining filling.  Take a small knife and swirl the filling through the batter.

Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack before slicing. Serves 8 to 10.