It’s officially Spring. Rhubarb is just starting to emerge from its wintery bed and strawberry plants are slowly waking up in this gorgeous sunshine we’re having. So far, it’s been a good start to the season and I couldn’t be more thrilled to get growing.
During this transitional time, spring fruits and vegetables are just starting to make their way to the markets. Local strawberries, however, won’t be available for several more weeks, I reckon, Thankfully, there are frozen varieties that can ease the anticipation. While I don’t always suggest buying fruits out of season, there is something to be said for buying extra during the spring and summer months and freezing them for times like this. I highly recommend the practice.
Today, I’m sharing this simple strawberry streusel cake as an early homage to the season. This cake is vegan friendly and high in fiber, yet has a soft crumb. A streusel topping glorifies this strawberry studded quick bread; a little sweet hit and crunch this treat needs. You can easily replace the spelt flour for whole wheat, or make this into muffins by increasing the bake temperature to 375′ and reducing the cooking time by about half.
It’s best to source fresh berries for this recipe, however, if you only have frozen available, simply increase the baking time by about 10-15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Frozen fruit has less structure at the cellular level and thus releases more juice than fresh fruit when baked. I opted for frozen strawberries here and found it resulted in a longer bake time and a slightly more moist loaf. You can also add a few strawberries on top of the loaf prior to baking. For best texture, be sure to cool the loaf completely before slicing.
A quick and healthy alternative to your morning coffee shop treat. Opt for fresh strawberries if they are in season. Frozen strawberries will work just, however you may need to extend the baking time by 10-15 minutes.
- 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil, softened
- 2 1/4 cups sprouted spelt flour (or whole wheat flour)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons flax meal
- 2 tablespoons filtered water
- 2 cups fresh (or frozen) strawberries, diced
1. Preheat the oven to 350′. Grease a 9x5x3″ loaf pan and run a strip parchment paper widthwise along the bottom and up the long sides of the pan, leaving enough paper to overhang. Set aside.
2. In a small bowl add the streusel ingredients and mix with a pastry blender until pea sized crumbs form. Set aside. In large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the centre and set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, mix together the almond milk, apple sauce, olive oil, vanilla extract, and flax meal. Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture and stir just until combined. Stir in the strawberries just until combined.
4. Spoon in the prepared baking pan and add the streusel to the top. Bake in the preheated oven for 55-60 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool about 10 minutes before carefully removing it from the pan. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
whole wheat flour can be used in equal measure for spelt flour. Any seasonal fruit can be used in exchange for strawberries.
Keywords: Strawberries, Streusel, Quick bread