Yeasted Meringue Coffee Cake

The March 2011 Daring Baker’s Challenge was hosted by Ria of Ria’s Collection and Jamie of Life’s a Feast. Ria and Jamie challenged The Daring Bakers to bake a yeasted Meringue Coffee Cake.  They even encouraged us to put our own national spin on this cake.  Since I’m American, I decided to add apples and cinnamon to my filling, but since I’m also a little Italian and my hubby is a lot Italian, I decided to add chopped hazelnuts and honey.  This yeasted coffee cake came out delicious and moist.  The apples, cinnamon, hazelnuts, and honey filling was so delicious and represented a wonderful marriage of two nationalities.  While this coffee cake might be slightly time consuming, it’s definitely worth it!  Hope you enjoy!





*Makes 2 round coffee cakes, each approximately 10 inches in diameter, but the recipe can easily be halved to make one round coffee cake

Ingredients
For the yeast coffee cake dough:

4 cups flour
¼ cup sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
1 package active dried yeast
¾ cup whole milk
¼ cup water (doesn’t matter what temperature)
½ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
2 large eggs at room temperature

For the meringue:

3 large egg whites at room temperature
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup sugar

For the filling:

2 apples, peeled and cut into thin slices
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon                                                                                                                                                                                       1 cup chopped hazelnut                                                                                                                                                                                     Honey for drizzling

Egg wash:

1 beaten egg
confectioner’s sugar for dusting cakes

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 ½ cups of the flour, the sugar, salt and yeast.

In a saucepan, combine the milk, water and butter and heat over medium heat until warm and the butter is just melted.

With an electric mixer on low speed, gradually add the warm liquid to the flour/yeast mixture, beating until well blended. Increase mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes. Add the eggs and 1 cup flour and beat for 2 more minutes.

Using a wooden spoon, stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a dough that holds together. Turn out onto a floured surface (use any of the 1 ½ cups of flour remaining) and knead the dough for 8 to 10 minutes until the dough is soft, smooth and elastic, keeping the work surface floured and adding extra flour as needed.
Place the dough in a lightly greased (I use vegetable oil) bowl, turning to coat all sides. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel and let rise until double in bulk, 45 – 60 minutes. The rising time will depend on the type of yeast you use.

Prepare your filling:

In a small bowl, combine the apples, cinnamon, and sugar for the filling.

Once the dough has doubled, make the meringue:
In a clean mixing bowl – ideally a plastic or metal bowl so the egg whites adhere to the side (they slip on glass) and you don’t end up with liquid remaining in the bottom – beat the egg whites with the salt, first on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase to high and continue beating until foamy and opaque. Add the vanilla then start adding the ½ cup sugar, a tablespoon at a time as you beat, until very stiff, glossy peaks form.

Assemble the Coffee Cakes:

Line 2 baking/cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Punch down the dough and divide in half. On a lightly floured surface, working one piece of the dough at a time (keep the other half of the dough wrapped in plastic), roll out the dough into a 20 x 10-inch rectangle. Spread half of the meringue evenly over the rectangle up to about 1/2-inch from the edges. Sprinkle half of the cinnamon, sugar, and apples followed by half the chopped nuts.  Finally, drizzle some honey on top.

Now, roll up the dough jellyroll style, from the long side. Pinch the seam closed to seal. Very carefully transfer the filled log to one of the lined cookie sheets, seam side down. Bring the ends of the log around and seal the ends together, forming a ring, tucking one end into the other and pinching to seal.

Using kitchen scissors or a sharp knife (although scissors are easier), make cuts along the outside edge at 1-inch (2 ½ cm) intervals. Make them as shallow or as deep as desired but don’t be afraid to cut deep into the ring.

Repeat with the remaining dough, meringue and fillings.

Cover the 2 coffee cakes with plastic wrap and allow them to rise again for 45 to 60 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Brush the tops of the coffee cakes with the egg wash. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes until risen and golden brown. The dough should sound hollow when tapped.

Remove from the oven and slide the parchment paper off the cookie sheets onto the table. Very gently loosen the coffee cakes from the paper with a large spatula and carefully slide the cakes off onto cooling racks. Allow to cool.

Just before serving, dust the tops of the coffee cakes with confectioner’s sugar as well as cocoa powder if using chocolate in the filling. These are best eaten fresh, the same day or the next day.

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20 Comments

Filed under Baked Goods, Desserts

20 responses to “Yeasted Meringue Coffee Cake

  1. I am drooling over the photos… let me get back and see what this was about! Holy yumminess!
    Okay… love the filling … I would have done the same. Yummy photos, delicious recipe.

  2. Liss

    I had the pleasure to sample this coffee cake and it is really delicious! Great job!

  3. What a delicious looking coffee cake!

  4. Apple cinnamon sounds delicious – and it looks like you got a beautiful rise. Nice work!

  5. I just made a coffee cake yesterday, yours look so good. The filling on this is making me drool just a little 🙂

  6. Apples and cinnamon sounds like the perfect addition to this, great job!

  7. I love the apples. That was a great idea! Your coffee cake looks so tasty. I made my coffee cake simple with dried fruit and chocolate, but next time I think I’m going to try fresh fruit.

  8. This is such an interesting idea! It looks so fun when it’s finished.

  9. I had never heard of these until I started seeing the DB posts. What a delicious looking treat. I love the apple/cinnamon variation…sounds wonderful.

  10. I love your choice of filling, it sounds absolutely wonderful! Great job on this challenge the coffee cake looks perfect!

  11. Beautiful cake, the filling sounds delicious with apples and hazelnuts!

  12. Amy

    Your coffeecake is beautiful, and sounds delicious! It is packed so full of good stuff :)!

  13. Love the filling on this one.

  14. Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes

    Just gorgeous!!

    Amazing work – I am drooling big, BIG times.

    Thanks so much for another lovely post!

  15. This is a visual stunner. You’ve done a great and unique job with the challenge. This is my first visit to your blog and I’ve spent some time browsing through your earlier entries to get a sense of what you are about. I’m so glad I did that. I really love the food and recipes you feature here and I’ll definitely be back. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  16. Beautiful! I want to make this for Easter!

  17. What is not to love about this?? It is so beautiful. I love the apple and hazelnut in the filling – very nice!

  18. Sounds and looks divine!!! 🙂

  19. I love wreaths like these! It reminds me of a fantastic turkey + cranberry wreath I used to make with my mom as a kid… it was so delicious! I can’t even imagine what it would taste like with coffee cake ingredients! I love that you used apples too, delicious!

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