fat bottom

fat bottom

Sunday, March 27, 2011

daring bakers march madness...

well hello everyone! enjoying your sunday i hope! i know i am... it's been one of those well deserved lazy days... full of just plain ol' lying around watching movies and playing with my two little guys (the toys of choice today were legos, which by-the-way are the most awful thing to step barefoot on... ugh)

anyways, as always at the end of the month it's time to reveal the highly anticipated daring bakers challenge... and this months was an interesting one... a meringue filled coffee cake... say wha?? now... i'm not a huge fan of meringue, the only type i like is in the form or dainty macarons, other then that you can keep you're lemon meringue pie for someone else... but, i'm always up for trying new things, and the pictures posted by our hosts made this delicious dish look absolutely yummy... so i put my meringue hang-ups aside and busted out the ingredients...

the challenge was co-hosted by Ria of Ria’s Collection and Jamie of Life’s a Feast.... Ria and Jamie challenged their fellow daring bakers to bake a yeasted meringue coffee cake... the recipe was actually Jamie's fathers, which was left in his collection of recipes from about 70's... and i have to say, i am SO happy she shared this family recipe... the dough was almost brioche like, with the subtle hints of cinnamon, large melty chunks of chocolate, and a meringue that was almost like a soft nougat... it all went together perfectly...

filled meringue coffee cake

*the recipe makes 2 round coffee cakes, each approximately 10 inches in diameter 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:

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (i omitted these)

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips or coarsely chopped chocolate


prepare the dough:

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

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

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

4. using a wooden spoon, stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a dough that holds together, then 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

5. place the dough in a lightly greased 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

prepare your filling:

1. in a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and sugar for the filling if using, and measure out chocolate and nuts 2. once the dough has doubled, make the meringue...

3. 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

4. add the vanilla then start adding the ½ cup sugar, a tablespoon at a time as you beat, until very stiff, glossy peaks form

now to assemble the coffee cakes:

1. line 2 baking/cookie sheets with parchment paper

2. punch down the dough and divide in half

3. 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

4. spread half of the meringue evenly over the rectangle up to about 1/2-inch from the edges, then sprinkle half of your filling of choice evenly over the meringue

5. now, roll up the dough jellyroll style, from the long side. pinch the seam closed to seal

6. 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

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

8. repeat with the remaining dough, meringue and fillings

9. cover the 2 coffee cakes with plastic wrap and allow them to rise again for 45 to 60 minutes 10. preheat the oven to 350

11. brush the tops of the coffee cakes with the egg wash, then bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes until risen and golden brown, and the dough should sound hollow when tapped

12. 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, cool

13. 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, still warm the same day :)
enjoy, and happy baking everyone :)

1 comment:

  1. A perfect execution of the challenge recipe the crumb of the final cake is spot on light fluffy and airy well done. Great job on this challenge.

    Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.


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