Melissa’s Winter Wonderland Challenge: Holiday Coffee Cake with Fresh Fruit


coffee cake  The San Diego Food Bloggers have been put to the test once more!  Melissa’s Produce provided each of us with a box of beautiful treasures and a challenge to make two new recipes:  one sweet and one savory!    We were given some Korean pears,  Christmas Crunch seedless table grapes,  and some seedless, juicy, and sweet Jeju Mandarins with instructions to use all three in a sweet recipe for the holidays.


If you’ve never tried a Korean pear before,  they look almost like an apple.  They’re firm, crunchy, and have a delicate sweet flavor. The Christmas Crunch table grapes are amazing!  Seedless and sweet!  Not mushy,  but nice and firm!  The Jeju mandarins are also naturally sweet and juicy!    A simple fruit salad would have been amazing with these fruits,  but I decided to try a fresh fruit coffee cake with the fruit on the inside AND on the outside!

Mimi Avocado’s Amazing Fresh Fruit Coffee Cake


2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups brown sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup vegetable oil

2 teaspoons vanilla

3 large eggs

3 Jeju mandarin oranges

2 lbs. Christmas Crunch seedless table grapes

2 Korean pears

2 cups confectioners sugar


Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Measure the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, salt, baking soda, vegetable oil, and vanilla into the bowl of an electric stand mixer.  Add the three eggs, and stir slowly to combine all the ingredients.  Increase the speed to medium and mix for 2 minutes.  Zest one of the mandarin oranges, and add to the batter (about 2 teaspoons of zest).  Squeeze the juice of the same mandarin orange into the batter and mix until combined.   Peel one Korean pear, remove the core, and chop into uniform pieces about 1/2 inch square.  Cut some of the grapes in half until there is about one cup of cut grape pieces.  Add the chopped pear, sliced grapes, and pecans to the cake batter and stir just until evenly incorporated.   Grease and flour two 8 inch loaf pans.  Divide the batter evenly between the pans.  Bake the cakes for 45-55 minutes, until a wooden toothpick can be inserted into the thickest part of the cake and come out clean.

To make the glaze,  zest and juice one mandarin orange.   In a small mixing bowl,  combine the confectioners sugar with the zest and juice, beating until smooth and glossy.   Spoon half of the glaze onto each cake, letting the glaze drip over the edges of the cakes.

Garnish with fresh sliced mandarin orange, thinly sliced Korean pear, and whole Christmas crunch seedless table grapes.

jeju mandarin oranges

The Jeju mandarins have no seeds!  These little gems are so juicy and sweet!

Korean pear

The Korean pears can be eaten with the skin on, but I peeled one of the pears to put into the cake.  The other pear was served in thin slices with the cake.

coffee cake

This cake is so moist and tasty!   The first cake disappeared so fast that I couldn’t get it garnished!

coffee cake Many thanks to Melissa’s Produce for sending the fruit to use in this recipe!  Stay tuned for the savory recipe!  It’s coming up next!



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