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Apple Coffee Cake w/ Pecan & Bacon Streusel

Feast your eyes on THE single most delectable cake I've eaten in...well...a long arse time!!!  It's a coffee cake, so it's good for breakfast, but don't count it out for dessert, lunch, dinner...heck, midnight snack, even!  Right after I made this...while it was still warm...I cut a quarter of the cake out, and like a fabulous, thoughtful neighbor, I marched next door.  I knocked.  I rang the bell.  I waited.  I repeated said steps.  Like a good neighbor.  Unfortunately for them and my thighs nobody was home.  Well, nobody answered the door, at least.  Once I we tried a slice...that was all she wrote!  I sincerely hope that my neighbors didn't choose today to peek into my inner-thoughts this place, cuz then I'll feel guilty.  And I'll have to make another Apple Coffee Cake with Pecan and Bacon Streusel.  That would be horrible.  Maybe I should remind them once again that I'm a food blogger...and that is why I'm always outside primping the food and straddling the picnic table.  Because guilt is an awful thing.

Apple Coffee Cake with Pecan and Bacon Streusel
from Deb's Test Kitchen (Rick Bayless newsletter Sept. '10)
Serves 8 to 10

Streusel Topping
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 ounces pecans
6 tablespoon butter (3/4 stick), softened to room temperature
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 slices crispy bacon, crumbled

1 3/4 cup all purpose flour (8 ounces), plus extra for the cake pan and the apples
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 stick butter, softened, plus extra for the cake pan
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sour cream
1 pound firm, tart cooking apples (2 - 3 apples) peeled, cored, and cut into a medium dice

1/4 to 1/3 cup warm cajeta

Set your oven rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 9-inch x 2-inch round baking pan. Line the bottom with a parchment round, and sides with 2" strip of parchment paper.

In a food processor, pulse together all the streusel ingredients except for the bacon until well combined. The mixture should hold together, but still be a little crumbly. Scoop the streusel into a bowl and mix in the crumbled bacon.

Whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl. Set aside.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time beating after each addition. Pour in the vanilla and scrape in the sour cream. Mix until smooth. Add the flour mixture and mix on medium low until the mixture is smooth, taking care not to overmix. Toss the apple pieces with 1 tablespoon flour, then fold them into the batter. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the top. Bake the cake for 65 to 70 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the middle of cake comes out clean. Cool the cake completely in pan before unmolding. Once unmolded, drizzle the warm cajeta over the top.
Work it...
Own it....
Seriously, make this now.  Or I will.  Oooooh, scarey, huh?  I bet your thighs are quivering at the thought... oh wait, those are my thighs.

flash-back Friday Cookin' for my Captain