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Coffee Cake



You can use whatever combination of berries are available.
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat it to 350F Coat a 10-inch pie plate (or an 8- or 9- inch square pan) with cooking spray.
Combine the fruit, 5 tablespoons of the sugar, and the cinnamon in the oiled pie plate, and toss together lightly.
Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the egg whites, the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, oil, applesauce, juice, and extract.
Place a strainer over the bowl and add the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Stir and sift the dry ingredients onto the applesauce mixture.
Add the wheat germ if using it.
Beat the dry ingredients into the wet just to blend; do not overbeat.
To make the optional topping, combine the dry ingredients in a small bowl.
Add the butter, and use your fingertips to pinch the ingredients together.
Add the oil and juice and toss with a fork until crumbly, adding a few more drops of juice if needed.
Pour the batter over the fruit in the pan; don't worry if some fruit peeks through.
Sprinkle the crumb topping, if using, over the cake.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes if using fresh fruit, or 50 minutes for frozen fruit, or until the top of the cake is golden brown and springy to the touch and a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cool the cake slightly on a wire rack, then cut and serve warm.
Cake is best fresh from the oven, but it keeps a day or two, covered, at room temperature.
Warm before serving.
Note: The applesauce in the cake adds moisture and flavor but weights the crumb slightly.
If you prefer a lighter texture, omit the applesauce and use 1/3 cup canola oil instead of 1/4 cup.