Black Sesame Coffee Cake with Quince Glaze
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Old-school meets new-school in this classic buttery sour cream coffee cake flavoured with nutty black sesame and a swirl of sweet Korean honey-quince tea. This definitely ain't your bubbie's coffee cake!
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 16
  • 1 cup Stirling butter, softened
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup Gay Lea sour cream
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ cup roasted black sesame seeds
  • 2 ¾ cups flour
  • 2 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup mogwacheong (Korean honey quince tea), divided
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Generously grease a 12-cup fluted tube pan, and dust with flour.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the sour cream, vanilla extract, and sesame oil.
  3. Using a coffee grinder or a small food processor, grind the sesame seeds into a fine powder. (Don't overprocess - you'll end up with black tahini!) Stir into the wet ingredients, mixing until well combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients, and stir until the mixture comes together into a thick, smooth batter.
  5. Spoon one third of the batter into the prepared pan. Spoon ¼ cup of the honey-quince tea on top of the batter, staying away from the edges of the pan. Top with half of the remaining batter, following by another ¼ cup of honey-quince tea, and then finish with the last portion of batter.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 55-60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out with a moist crumb. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then carefully invert and unmold. Brush the surface of the cake with the reserved ¼ cup quince tea, then tansfer to a wire rack to cool off completely.
Both the toasted sesame seeds and the honey-quince tea can be found at any well-stocked Korean or Japanese supermarket, or ordered online.
If you're in Toronto, I'd suggest checking out the Galleria Supermarket in North York, H-Mart at Yonge and Bloor, or P.A.T. Central in the Annex.
Recipe by Crumb: A Food Blog at