A good bundt cake should be moist with a tender crumb that is the star of the show. This delicious Louisiana crunch cake more than qualifies.
Because of the shape and exposure to heat, it can be easy to over bake this kind of cake. But this recipe uses both sour cream and buttermilk for an ultra-moist crumb.
Unlike most cakes that are filled and enrobed with sweet frosting, the cake can really shine with a bundt cake.
Still, the vanilla glaze is literally the icing on the cake for this flavorful and classic southern favorite.
Louisiana Crunch Cake
If too much frosting isn’t your thing, this Louisiana crunch cake is for you.
The butter in this golden yellow cake gives a richness you just don’t get from using oil. But don’t worry, it’s still light and moist.
Adding acidic ingredients like sour cream and buttermilk not only gives a wonderful tang to your cake, but it also ensures a softer texture that will still hold its shape.
The best part has to be baking the sugar and coconut onto the top of the cake.
Before adding your batter into the tin, you will sprinkle in the sugar and sweetened flaked coconut. Once baked and caramelized, you will be left with a crunch top to die for.
Ingredients for Louisiana Crunch Cake
You’ll find most Louisiana crunch cake recipes look pretty similar.
Unless you are strapped for time and want to use a boxed cake mix for convenience, you won’t find too many variations.
A few differences you might see is the inclusion of coconut extract or the use of plain yogurt over sour cream.
I like to stick with what’s proven, and this recipe is definitely a winner:
- Cake flour – The lower protein content gives a softer cake.
- Salt – Always a must when baking!
- Baking powder – Be careful when measuring.
- Baking soda – I like to sift my baking soda, as it can sometimes form lumps.
- Granulated sugar – Be sure to thoroughly cream your sugar and butter for a lighter crumb.
- Soft butter – Use full-fat butter for that super-rich flavor.
- Eggs – Always start with room temperature eggs.
- Sour cream – You can substitute for plain yogurt.
- Buttermilk – Make your own! 1 cup milk = 1 tablespoon white vinegar in your measuring cup topped up with milk.
- Pure vanilla extract – Stay away from the cheaper vanilla essence! The deeper, more natural flavor is so worth the cost.
For that lovely crunch on top:
- Granulated sugar – You can use brown sugar, but it won’t leave the same crack.
- Sweetened flaked coconut – The flakes are a better option here to avoid burning and give a nice texture.
Vanilla Almond Glaze
- Powdered sugar – I always sift mine to ensure the glaze is totally smooth.
- Melted butter – Butter adds a smooth feel that you just don’t get without it.
- Evaporated milk – Feel free to use regular or coconut milk here.
- Pure vanilla extract – I like to use vanilla paste for those beautiful dark flecks.
- Almond extract – Be careful, as this can sometimes be overwhelming.
Tips for Making the Best Cake
Since this cake isn’t going to be smothered in frosting, you want to do everything you can to make sure that the crumb is tender and moist.
- If you can find it, cake flour will really make a lot of difference here.
- You can use all-purpose flour if that’s all you can find. Just be sure to sift it and don’t overmix the batter. As you mix, you are developing the gluten in the flour, and too much can cause a dry cake.
- Always use full-fat ingredients when baking. They don’t just provide a more rich flavor, they also contribute to the texture and density of your cake. Low-fat spreads can leave a greasy texture where sugar substitutes actually absorb moisture from a cake.
- Due to the shape of the cake tin and the sticky topping, it is essential to thoroughly grease every nook and cranny.
- When you’re sure you have it all covered, dust the whole thing with flour to be extra safe.
- Although you want to be sure your sugar and butter is properly creamed to a lovely light and fluffy consistency, that’s where your heavy hand needs to take a back seat. It’s something I struggle with for sure!
- When mixing the rest of this batter, be gentle. Fold your dry ingredients, alternating with the buttermilk until it is only just incorporated. I would suggest doing this by hand rather than in a stand mixer.
- Let the cake cool in the tin for at least 10 minutes before you try taking it out to let the sugar top set.
- Finally, allow the cake to cool completely before glazing. If you add it too soon, it will melt and become a sticky mess.
What Can You Add to the Cake?
I think the cake is such a simple and perfect option, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get creative.
- If you want more coconut in your crunch cake, try making your own buttermilk with coconut milk. The measurements are the same as with regular buttermilk, only this way, you should get a lovely subtle coconut flavor throughout the entire cake.
- Another option would be to use a coconut milk glaze to really boost that flavor.
- Or better yet, how about a lime glaze to really compliment the coconut?
- One more great option could be some fresh raspberries dropped into the batter. Fold some into the mix and sprinkle on top before baking. As the cake bakes and rises, they will sink into the middle for colorful pops of fresh flavor.
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