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Dec 22, 2009 01:46 PM

Looking for source for good Russian Coffee Cake

In 2003, I asked where in Manhattan below 96th Street I could get tasty Russian coffee cake. I got one reply, Fairway, and one comment from a Russian who said he knew nothing about Russian coffee cake. Since then I have tried several acceptable ones, among others from Zabars and Russ and Daughters. Can anyone suggest any other place that has good Russian coffee cake, maybe like the kind we got in the Bronx near Mosholu Parkway some 50-60 years ago. Maybe it's not really of Russian origin, but it still brings back memories.

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  1. Hmmm I'm with the person who knew nothing about a Russian coffee cake (maybe that was even me?). Could you describe it please? Many times people refer to something as "Russian," when it is not (although, it may still exist and be available)....

    3 Replies
    1. re: RussianGirl

      Sorry for the delay in answering. It contains raisins and pecans or other nuts along with some kind of dark sugary filling in a dough that may have sour cream among the ingredients. If you look in Eli's website, that's Eli Zabar, the relative who broke off and opened a store or two on the East Side of New York, around 82nd Street and Third Avenue, and search for Russian Coffee Cake, you may find a photo of his special Russian Coffee Cake.

      1. re: RussianGirl

        I think(though I'm not sure) that it is a cake originally brought over to NY by Russian Jews, so gentile Russians may not be familiar with it.

        1. re: braisen

          I agree it's likely a Jewish/Russian thing, since it is usually carried in Jewish food specialty stores, along with rugelach, bagels, etc. I've been eating it for years and just bought some at Zabar's on Sunday -- great as always -- and also love Eli's. I think my Russian grandparents, who did live in the Bronx 60 years ago would approve!

      2. Zabars has a wonderful version. (Also, if you're into home cooking, the original Moosewood Cookbook has an excellent recipe, which includes adding almonds, coconut, chocolate, and apricot jam, among other things.)