Maple Nut Coffee Cake
My mother always told me imitation was a fine form of flattery. And now I’ve figured out an even finer form – when someone bakes your recipes and then feels comfortable enough with them to change up the ingredients to suit their own tastes. That’s what Betty Minton of Princeton, WV, did after she baked one of my favorite coffee cakes – Kathy’s Cinnamon Breakfast Cake. Betty was thinking maple, and there is maple flavoring in both the cake and the glaze, turning this decidedly wonderful cake into something extraordinary. It’s that cake to take to brunch, to the office, the potluck, the bake sale. It’s good after dinner or before lunch, with a cup of coffee or a cold glass of milk. Thanks, Betty, for your creativity – I’m flattered.
For the filling:
- 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts
For the cake:
- Vegetable oil spray for misting the pan
- Flour for dusting the pan
- 1 package (18.25 ounces) plain yellow cake mix
- 1 package (3.4 ounces) vanilla instant pudding mix
- ¾ cup vegetable oil
- ¾ cup water
- 4 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon maple flavoring
- For the glaze:
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- ½ teaspoon maple flavoring
- ¼ cup chopped pecans or walnuts, if desired
Prep: 20 minutes Bake: 45-50 minutes
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- For the filling, place the brown sugar, cinnamon, and chopped nuts in a small bowl and stir combine. Set the mixture aside.
- Mist a Bundt pan with vegetable oil spray and dust with flour.
- Place the cake mix, pudding mix, oil, water, eggs, and maple flavoring in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until the ingredients are just combined. Stop the machine and scrape the sides of the bowl. Increase the mixer to medium speed and beat for 1½ minutes or until the batter is smooth. Spoon a third of the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with half of the filling. Pour over another third of the batter, and sprinkle with the remaining filling. Pour over the remaining batter, and smooth the top. Place the pan in the oven.
- Bake the cake until it springs back when lightly pressed in the center, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the pan to a wire rack to cool 10 minutes.
- While the cake cools, prepare the glaze. Place the confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl and stir in the milk and maple flavoring. Set the glaze aside.
- Invert the cake onto a rack to completely cool, 30 to 40 minutes. Spoon the glaze over the cooled cake, and press nuts into the top of the cake, if desired.
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