And I decided not to make it.
Then a few hours ago I saw Monika’s challenge done and I’ve changed my mind.
But I also yearned for chocolate whole day, so I made some changes in the recipe, to comfort myself, since I’ve been past few days, weeks and months in a quite bad mood.
Recipe makes 2 round coffee cakes, each approximately 10 inches in diameter, but it can easily be halved to make one, what I did. The other changes I did refer to the batter. I reduced amount of flour for 50 g and added cocoa instead.
And for the filling I used:
– 150 g chopped roasted hazelnuts
– 150 g chopped dark chocolate
– 100 g candied cherries
Although, because of the meringue, I was afraid that cake would be too sweet, it wasn’t, especially my chocolate version was not. Actually, it has a slightly bitter note, and cherries and toasted hazelnuts, give it a nice flavour.
- 600 g flour
- 55 g sugar
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 package ( 7 g) active dried yeast
- 180 ml whole milk
- 60 ml water (doesn’t matter what temperature)
- 135 g unsalted butter at room temperature
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 10 strands saffron for Ria’s version (Saffron might be hard to find and it’s expensive, so you can substitute with ½ - 1 teaspoon of ground cardamom or ground nutmeg. Or simply leave it plain like Jamie’s version)
- 3 large egg whites at room temperature
- ¼teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- 110 g sugar
- 110 g chopped pecans or walnuts
- 30 g granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 170 g semisweet chocolate chips or coarsely chopped chocolate
- 130 g chopped cashew nuts
- 30 g granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- 170 g semisweet chocolate chips
- Egg wash: 1 beaten egg
- Cocoa powder (optional) and confectioner’s sugar (powdered/icing sugar) for dusting cakes
- In a large mixing bowl, combine 230 g 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.
- Ria’s version: add the 10 saffron threads to the warmed liquid and allow to steep off of the heat for 10 minutes. This will give the mixture a distinct aroma and flavor and a yellowish-orange hue.
- 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 150 g 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 remaining flour) and knead the dough for 8 to 10 minutes until the dough is soft, smooth, sexy 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.
- In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and sugar for the filling if using.
- You can add the chopped nuts to this if you like, but I find it easier to sprinkle on both the nuts and the chocolate separately.
- 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.
- 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 51 x 25 ½ cm rectangle.
- Spread half of the meringue evenly over the rectangle up to about ¾ cm from the edges. Sprinkle half of your filling of choice evenly over the meringue (ex: half of the cinnamon-sugar followed by half the chopped nuts and half of the chocolate chips/chopped chocolate).
- 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 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 180°C.
- 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.