How to Make Crumbs for Cakes

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Perhaps more irresistible than the cake beneath them, the buttery crumbs nestled on top of a New York style crumb cake must be perfectly sized with a slightly crunchy surface and melty soft interior. Achieving these perfect attributes, however, does not come easy for many bakers. Fortunately, you can make delectable crumbs for cakes by following the steps below. These measurements make crumbs for a 13-by-9-inch cake.

Things You'll Need

  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 5 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Large, deep mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • 3 sticks butter
  • Large rubber spatula
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • Shallow plate
  • Place flour, white sugar and ground cinnamon into mixing bowl. Whisk to blend dry ingredients well.

  • Melt butter in microwave oven or allow to soften, unwrapped, at room temperature for several hours. Add to dry ingredients in bowl.

  • Use rubber spatula to blend butter into dry ingredients. Add vanilla extract and blend again until mixture holds together in a cohesive mass.

  • Transfer dough to a shallow plate. Allow to cool for 15 minutes.

  • Separate dough into several large pieces. Work with one piece at a time. Use fingers to make large pieces into smaller chunks.

  • Roll smaller chunks into crumbs the size of marbles. Set the crumbs aside on the shallow plate in a single layer. Repeat rolling large pieces into crumbs with remaining dough.

Tips & Warnings

  • It may be necessary to use more than one shallow plate so that the crumbs fit neatly into a single layer.
  • Don't substitute self-rising cake flour or all-purpose flour for the regular cake flour specified here.

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