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Peach Coffee Cake

El Nino is officially over. The farmers have stopped complaining. The California summer fruit industry is finally back in full production after two years of late, spotty harvests caused by erratic spring weather brought by El Nino and its bookend ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes | Serves 12 to 16

Nut topping

  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Step 1Combine flour, brown sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. Rub in butter to make mixture crumbly, then stir in nuts. Set aside.


  • 4 large peaches
  • 2 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising), plus more for preparing pan
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened, plus more for greasing
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 2/3 cup milk, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Step 1Peel peaches using vegetable peeler or blanch in hot water 15 seconds and remove peel. Cut in half, remove pits and cut into 1/2-inch slices.

Step 2Stir together flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Set aside.

Step 3Combine butter, shortening and sugar in large bowl; beat with hand-held electric mixer or wooden spoon until fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, then zest. Beat in flour mixture alternately with milk and vanilla, about one-fourth at a time, beginning and ending with flour. Batter will be thick and fluffy.

Step 4Combine brown sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. Spread half batter evenly in thin layer in greased and floured 13x9-inch cake pan. Arrange all of peach slices over batter and sprinkle with brown sugar mixture. Carefully spread remaining batter evenly over peaches. Crumble reserved Nut Topping over batter. Bake at 350 degrees in center of oven until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean and edges of cake barely begin to pull away from sides of pan, about 40 minutes.

Step 5Cool in pan on rack. Cut into squares and serve warm or at room temperature, directly from pan.

Note: This recipe is from "The Greenmarket Cookbook" by Joel Patraker and Joan Schwartz (Viking, $29.95). It comes from chef and cookbook author Jim Fobel.
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