Growing up and even now I would consider myself a rule follower. I don’t want to get myself in trouble; rules are there for a reason. You know, someone has walked this road before and the rules are there to guarantee you an easy ride. This went for recipes as well – you follow those instructions to a T or are left with a sad, inedible, disappointment. I’m looking at you double batch of blondies!
My mum on the other hand, to my complete dismay, played it fast and loose with recipes. As a child, I would become so upset when she would the change the recipe, adding, leaving out, and substituting as she pleased – before she even tried the recipe in its original form! I couldn’t even.
This cake is the first that I can remember where my mother tweaked a recipe to her liking. It was originally a Martha Stewart recipe for a cherry streusel cake. She said, “I like strawberries better, so that’s what I’m going to use.” I’ll never know what that cherry streusel cake tasted like – the strawberry version was a winner and became a staple dessert growing up.
Besides insisting that everything is better with lime over lemon – my mum taught me recipes are meant to be played with and you can “use what you’ve got.” In that spirit, I made her Strawberry Streusel Cake but I replaced the sour cream with yogurt and added sliced almonds to the streusel topping.
The result? A coworker-approved cake that is moist and flavourful. And the true life lesson that mothers are always right.
Strawberry Almond Streusel Cake
Ingredients for the Almond Streusel
- ½ cup flour
- ¼ cup packed brown sugar
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ stick (¼ cup) butter, room temperature
Ingredients for the Cake
- 1 stick (½ cup) butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
- 2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup plain or vanilla yogurt (for the love of cake do not use fat free!)
- 1 ½ cups strawberries, sliced
Ingredients for the Milk Glaze
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper.
Make the streusel. Combine the dry ingredients in a small bowl. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or fork to create pea-sized clumps. Set aside.
Make the cake batter. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a bowl and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add about half of the dry ingredients to the batter, mixing on low speed. Continue to mix on low and add the yogurt. Add the other half of the dry ingredient and mix just until combined.
Assemble the cake. Spread about half of the cake batter on to the bottom of the springform pan. Layer in the sliced strawberries, leaving a half-inch border so the strawberries do not touch the edge of the pan. Evenly spread the remaining batter over the strawberries. It’s ok if a few strawberries poke through! Sprinkle the almond streusel over the top.
Bake for about 45-50 minutes. The cake should be golden brown and springy in the middle. Let it cool completely in the pan. Meanwhile, make the milk glaze by whisking the icing sugar and milk until smooth. Once cool, drizzle the cake with the glaze and let it set, about 5 minutes.