Hungarian Sour Cherry Cake

I actually look forward to weekend mornings where the family can relax and eat breakfast together without being rushed.  I tend to make different breakfast foods other than toast and eggs on Sunday mornings.  Sometimes I make pancakes, waffles, quiche, etc, but today I wanted to try something different.  At first glance it looks like coffee cake, well, it’s actually is a coffee cake, but this “Hungarian Sour Cherry Cake” is eaten as breakfast in Hungary too.  I got this recipe from the June/July 2010 issue of Saveur magazine.
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2 lbs. pitted fresh sour cherries
  or frozen and thawed sour cherries
1⁄4 cup flour, plus more for pan
16 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened,
   plus more for pan
1 1⁄2  cups sugar
3 tbsp. kirsch or brandy
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 egg
2 1⁄4  cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
3⁄4 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup milk

Heat oven to 400°. Toss cherries with 1⁄4 cup flour in a bowl; set aside.
Grease a 13″ x 18″ x 1″ baking sheet with butter and dust with flour; set aside. In a large bowl, beat together butter, sugar, kirsch, and vanilla with a hand mixer on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Add egg; beat until incorporated.
In a medium bowl, whisk together whole wheat flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer running on low speed, alternately add flour mixture and milk in 3 batches to make a batter. Spoon batter onto reserved baking sheet and smooth evenly. Sprinkle cherries over the top. Bake until cake is golden brown, 45–50 minutes. Let cake cool 30 minutes, then cut into 12 squares.
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My opinion: What’s not to like about butter, cherries and kirsch???   It wasn’t overly sweet, just the right sweetness for coffee cake/breakfast cake.  Loved the taste of butter in the all wheat flour, hint of kirsch/brandy, and the plumpness of the cherries.   I didn’t use the sour cherries, but I used frozen red cherries;  I thawed and drained the extra juice overnight in the fridge (I think that’s a must do procedure not to over-saturate the cake with cherry juice, if you’re using frozen).   Instead of kirsch, I used cherry rum (very similar taste to kirsch).   Just beautiful flavour!

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