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Chocolate Chip Yeasted Meringue Coffee Cake (Daring Bakers)

March 27, 2011

This is not a gluten-free Yeasted Meringue Coffee Cake. Just thought I’d rip the band-aid off. I know. It hurts.

I’d love to be able to grant you a nice pretty little gluten-free version but the truth of the matter is… I’m just not that good at the gluten-free bread thing. Yet.

So I had a choice to make. Do I try the gluten-free thing in the midst of my struggle with gluten-free yeast doughs (and I’m telling you, it’s not pretty) and risk ending up with something we don’t want to eat, let alone post about?

Or do I make G happy (he was really gunning for this one) and make him something just for him that yes, I can’t eat but I can look at and smell and touch and swoon over? Honestly it wasn’t much of a choice, especially since I have really missed kneading dough. Oh and I love him. That should have come first right? Oh well.

So it comes to be that gluten once again graces the pages. We’ll let you come out of the cupboard for this one but don’t think I won’t put you straight back when we’re done here.

To be honest this challenge didn’t really excite me from the get go. I’ve never been a huge fan of sweet doughs. But when I realised I wouldn’t be eating it but enjoying all the aspects of making sweet doughs that I love the most, I was sold.

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.

We were given the option of doing whatever filling we liked, along with the meringue of course. Since this one was for G, I let him choose. And not the “Well I think we should do this but it’s up to you” kind of choosing. I was good. I didn’t manipulate it one bit. I knew what the outcome would be.

Just chocolate chips.

“Really? You sure you don’t want anything else?”

Yes. Just that.

He’s a plain and simple kind of guy. He allows me to experiment a lot without complaining, but deep down he’s most satisfied with the plain.

So we jumped in and started mixing and kneading. He likes being in the kitchen but it’s not really his thing so he gets bored quickly. He pretty much made the dough, and I did the finishing.

It turned out great. I got to knead to my heart’s content and watch the dough rise. I got to roll out the dough and fill and cut and pinch. Best of all I got to watch it brown in the oven as the smell of sweet, fresh-baked bread wafted through the house. And he was happy.

That’s my idea of relaxation.

Chocolate Chip Yeasted Meringue Coffee Cake: (Daring Baker’s Challenge Recipe March 2011)

(Makes 2 round coffee cakes, each approximately 10 inches in diameter
The recipe can easily be halved to make one round coffee cake)

Dough:

  • 4 cups (600 g / 1.5 lbs.) flour
  • ¼ cup (55 g / 2 oz.) sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon (5 g / ¼ oz.) salt
  • 1 package (2 ¼ teaspoons / 7 g / less than an ounce) active dried yeast
  • ¾ cup (180 ml / 6 fl. oz.) whole milk
  • ¼ cup (60 ml / 2 fl. oz. water (doesn’t matter what temperature)
  • ½ cup (135 g / 4.75 oz.) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature

Meringue:

  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (110 g / 4 oz.) castor/superfine sugar

Filling:

  • 2 Tablespoons (30 g / 1 oz.) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (170 g / 6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips or coarsely chopped chocolate

Egg wash:

  • 1 beaten egg

Cocoa powder (optional) and confectioner’s sugar (powdered/icing sugar) for dusting cakes

Directions:

Prepare the dough:

In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 ½ cups (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.

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 (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 1 ½ cups of flour remaining) 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. (A good test is to run your finger lightly over the smooth surface of the dough, the dough will be right when it has a silky feel to it.)

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  sugar and chopped Chocolate.

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 (about 51 x 25 ½ cm) rectangle. Spread half of the meringue evenly over the rectangle up to about 1/2-inch (3/4 cm) from the edges. Sprinkle half of the chocolate-sugar mixture evenly over the meringue.

Now, roll up the dough jelly roll/swiss roll 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 (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.

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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9 Comments leave one →
  1. March 27, 2011 1:38 pm

    I really really wish I had a slice of this with my morning coffee like right this minute!

    • March 27, 2011 10:58 pm

      Hey Maris, the longer it sat on the counter the longer I wished it was gluten free! *sigh* oh well

  2. mom permalink
    March 27, 2011 4:29 pm

    I can tell you all that this was really tasty and hope it will grace my kitchen counter again soon. You go girl!

  3. March 27, 2011 7:31 pm

    Yup, that’s exactly the response I’d get if I asked my family for their filling preference…chocolate trumps all! Your coffee cake looks great~

    • March 27, 2011 10:59 pm

      Thanks Liz, so glad you commented and I got to visit your site!

  4. April 7, 2011 1:12 am

    That looks downright scrumptious!

  5. April 18, 2011 6:56 am

    This looks incredible!
    But I have a fear of yeast. However, I might try to conquer that fear, with the prospect of this deliciousness at the end of it all!

    • April 19, 2011 9:46 pm

      Don’t fear the yeast! All you have to do is go into it the first few times with no expectations. Just play. Then you can get a feel for it without the pressure of getting it right!

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