Maureen Fraîche

Mixing Business and Pleasure in the Kitchen

Birthday Cake Crumb

Birthday Cake Crumb

Well folks, we’ve got some birthdays coming up!  My oldest and I share the same birthday, believe it or not, and instead of doubling up on cakes (as appealing as that sounds), I like to do something that makes both of us happy campers.  This year, he’s asked for a robot cake.  Me?  I want to try something out of a cookbook my parents got me last year–momofuku milk barI love reading cookbooks (I have over 100 of them) and this one is different than any other I’ve yet to peruse.  From ‘cereal milk’ to ‘the crunch,’ Christini Tosi offers up recipes that combine her expertise as a pastry chef with her guiltless love of homey baking.  This is a woman who committed herself to replicating her childhood (and adulthood) love of Funfetti cake mix and frosting from scratch. 

While I don’t plan to construct a layer cake, I did want to try each component of her recipe for Birthday Cake–the Birthday Cake Crumb included.  What is the crumb, you ask?  Think of sandy, sweet, slightly salty, little crunchy bits that could happily find their way on top of all sorts of desserts…or just be eaten shamelessly by the handful.  Though I don’t think I’ll use them on my robot cake, I will be using them to make momofuku’s Confetti Cookies.  Yay for birthdays!

Birthday Cake Crumb
Makes about 2 1/4 cups


1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons rainbow sprinkles
1/4 cup grape seed oil (canola oil may be used)
1 tablespoon clear vanilla extract

Heat your oven to 300 degrees.

Combine the sugars, flour, baking powder, salt, and rainbow sprinkles in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on low speed until combined.

Slowly drizzle in the oil and vanilla as you continue to mix on low speed until the wet and dry ingredients come together to form small clumps.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or a Silpat.  Spread the clumps onto the pan and bake for about 20 minutes, breaking up the clumps occasionally.  When done, the clumps will be just a touch moist, but will dry and harden as they cool down.

Cool these yummy bits completely and then store in an airtight container.  They’ll keep for a week on the counter or up to a month in the fridge or freezer.

Nutrition information per batch of Birthday Cake Crumb: 1360 calories, 62 g total fat, 7 g saturated fat, 212 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber, 6 g protein

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons of Birthday Cake Crumb (1/18 of recipe): 75 calories, 3 g total fat, <1 g saturated fat, 12 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber, <1 g protein


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