Although coffee cakes are not traditionally made with coffee they certainly taste wonderfully delicious accompanied by a good cup of freshly brewed coffee.
Braided Coffeecake has been in my recipe collection for a good number of years just as the recipe for Daisy Coffeecake. I’m sure it was an intriguing picture that piqued my interest in making it for the first time. I must have come across the recipe while browsing through someone else's cook book or magazine since my recipe is scribbled on two small index cards.
I haven’t made this in a while and after locating the recipe to make it once again I realized that it was time to give it a fresh look although I’m having a problem letting go of those less than perfectly written, stained recipe cards.
The original recipe includes recipes for apple and cream cheese fillings. My favourite of the two is the apple filling but at some point in the history of making this coffee cake I experimented with a simple citrus flavoured ricotta filling.
The apple filling remains my favourite but the ricotta filling takes a very close second place. Although they are are totally different from each other they’re both equally delicious.
In the past week I purchased a container of ricotta not knowing exactly how I might use it. Having placed it at eye level in the refrigerator I was reminded each time the door was opened that its sweet nutty flavor would not last forever and it was time to decide in which shape or form it would be enjoyed.
Finally captured in the arms of this braided sweet dough… it couldn’t have found a better place!
450 grams ricotta
1/2 cup sugar
zest from 1 orange
zest from 1 lemon
- Drain excess moisture from ricotta by placing in a small colander for a few hours.
- Beat ricotta until light and fluffy, beat in egg and sugar. Fold in citrus zest.
- Refrigerate until ready to use.
4 cups peeled sliced apples
1 ½ teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons water
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
½ teaspoon cinnamon
- Combine apples, lemon juice and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and let simmer for about 7 minutes.
- Mix together flour, sugar and cinnamon and stir into the apples.
- Cook until mixture thickens stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat and cool before using.
Cream Cheese Filling
8 ounce package of cream cheese (softened)
1 egg yolk
6 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/ teaspoon vanilla
- Beat all ingredients together until well blended and smooth.
- Place in refrigerator until ready to use.
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water
¼ cup warm milk
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup sugar
6 tablespoons butter (softened)
2 to 2 1/2 cups flour
1 egg white beaten with 1 teaspoon water
- Dissolve yeast in the warm water with 1 teaspoon sugar.
- In a large bowl beat together egg, salt, sugar, butter and warm milk.
- Gradually beat in 2 cups flour to make a soft dough. Add the remaining ½ cup flour as much as needed until a smooth, elastic dough forms.
- Place in greased bowl and allow to rise for 1 ½ hours.
- Punch down dough and briefly knead for about a minute.
- Roll into a 15 by 10 inch rectangle and place on large lightly greased or parchment lined baking sheet.
- Cut outer sections of rectangle into 10 to 12 diagonal strips leaving the middle part uncut for the filling..
- Place filling down the center then cross strips over filling alternately until all strips are folded over.
- Tuck any excess dough under loaf.
- Brush loaf with beaten egg white and water then let rise uncovered in a warm place for 30 minutes.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in a preheated 350 degree F. oven.
- Cool on rack then lightly sift confectioners’ sugar over top.
Notes, Tips and Suggestions
- After dough has risen cut in half and make two smaller braids instead. Check at 20 to 25 minutes if baked.
- This coffee cake freezes well.