The Classic Coffee Cake

Just like the kind that comes in the box at the grocery store, only much, much, much, much better. This is the easiest kind of all to shape, and can be filled with pretty much anything from jam to chocolate to cheese to fruit. This one will be raspberry. Start with about a third cup of raspberry jam. Add a few drops of almond extract for extra awesomeness and stir it in.

Being careful not to get any filling on the edges, spread a medium-thin layer over the center of one half of the dough. Why shouldn’t you get any on the edges?

Because that’s where your beaten egg glue goes.

Paint it all around the edge of the dough piece, then lift up the far end…

…and fold it over the filling.

Ideally, you want a touch of overlap on the outer edge, since the tendency for the top layer of dough will be to lift off as it rises. Press firmly all around the outer edge of the pastry to seal it. Press down along the fold as well to discourage any bubbling or curling along that side of the cake.

Brush any residual flour off the surface…

…slip your hands under the cake and transfer it to a parchment-lined sheet pan.

Now, using a pair or kitchen shears, snip steam vents in the top layer of dough. The pattern is up to you.

Paint the pastry with egg wash, being careful not to seal the vents shut.

While the cake proofs, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. The coffeecake will need to rise for about 45 minutes, just until it’s slightly puffed. As with all laminated pastries, it need not rise much, certainly nothing like double its size. About a 30% increase in size is all you need. How much is that? Just enough so you notice it, but not so much that the dough is spongy on the outside. See here?

At this point you’ll want to paint on another coating of egg wash. It also helps to run a moistened finger all the way around the edge, again, just to keep the top from making any funny moves in the oven. Open the oven, put in the cake, and immediately drop the temperature to 375.

Bake it about half an hour until the top is a deep gold, turning the pan once at about the 20 minute mark. Pretty much all coffeecakes of this style split at least a little in the oven, since the very top layer of dough gets brittle in the heat. This one split quite a bit more than I was hoping.

Oh well, that’s what icing is for.

See? Problem solved. Cool it completely before serving.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *