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Christmas Breakfast Idea ~ Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake ~

December 24, 2011

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Well, congratulations everyone!  We made it to another Christmas Eve!!  All of that running about, hustling and bustling, trying to pull the gifts and groceries together.  I hope by now you are all nestled in cozy and warm with your loved ones surrounding you.  Merry Christmas!  This Christmas season has been a busy one.  There was a lot of baking.  A TON of cookies and truffles out the wazzoo!  But it’s not over yet.  In fact, you still have time because THE most important meal of all is yet to come.  It’s not the turkey dinner, we have that all covered, right?!  The most important meal is tomorrow morning, Christmas Day.  You have to have a delicious breakfast in order to optimize your unwrapping.  You certainly do not want to be fatigued half way through the unwrapping and have to stop due to malnutrition, right?!!  That’s right.  You need a delicious and not too heavy breakfast to get your motor running!

This apple cinnamon coffee cake is absolutely perfect for Christmas morning breakfast.  You can make it tonight, pop it in the fridge and then just let it come to room temperature for 30 minutes then bake it for 30 minutes.  That gives you an hour to look totally amazing through the eyes of your breakfast sharers.  This coffee cake is very similar to cinnamon buns.  I have never had a cake with yeast in it so I’m still not convinced that it is indeed a cake.  Cake or buns either way it is delicious.  It is sweet, spicy, soft and tender.  It is a little time consuming about 2 hours depending on the temperature of your home.  If you get to it right now you can have it done lickity split!  What are you waiting for?

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Ingredients

For the Dough…

2 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast

1/4 cup warm water, about 105 to 155 degrees F.

1 teaspoon sugar

6 tablespoons granulated sugar

3/4 cup butter, at room temperature

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs

4 1/2 to 5 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup warm whole milk, 105 to 115 degrees F.

For the Filling…

3 large apples, peeled and cut into small cubes (I used Jonagold apples)

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon cornstarch

For the Streusel…

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

pinch of cardamom

3 tablespoons butter, at room temperature

1 egg and sugar for brushing and topping the dough before baking

To Make the Dough…

In a small bowl, mix together yeast, warm water and pinch of sugar.  Stir together until yeast is dissolved and set aside for 10 minutes.  Yeast will foam up.  That’s how you know it’s alive!

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, add the sugar, butter, cardamom, and salt.  Blend on medium speed until pale in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Stop the mixer, scrape down the bowl, and add eggs and 1 cup of flour.  Blend on medium speed until thoroughly incorporated and creamy, about 1 minute.  Stop the mixer and add 2 cups more cups of flour, foamy yeast mixture, and warm milk.  Blend in medium speed until the flour disappears.  Mixture will be very wet.

Add 1 1/2 to 2 more cups of flour.  Blend until the flour is almost incorporated.

Dump the dough onto a lightly floured work surface.  Knead for 5 to 8 minutes by hand.  Dough will be glossy and just slightly sticky.  Place dough in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and a towel and let rest in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in size.

While the dough rises, make the apple filling and the streusel.

To make the Apple Filling

Toss together diced apples, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, cornstarch, nutmeg and salt.  Leave at room temperature and set aside until ready to use.

To make the Streusel Filling…

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and cardamom.  Add butter and, using your fingers, work the butter into the flour mixture.  Break up the butter into the mixture, until thoroughly incorporated and crumbly.  Set aside.

Continue on with the Dough…

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

When the dough has doubled in size, dump it out onto a lightly floured work surface.   Use a large knife or a bench knife to divide the dough in two.  Roll each dough piece into about a 10×14-inch rectangle.  Sprinkle with half of the streusel mixture.  Add half of the apple mixture over the apples.  Add a bit of the apple juices too.  That’s fine.

Starting from the longest side, begin to roll the dough.  This isn’t like a cinnamon roll, you don’t have to roll it into a super tight swirl.  Fold in about 1 1/2 to 1-inch folds.  Keep the seam on the bottom.

Repeat the same steps for the second piece of dough.

Carefully lift roll onto the prepared baking sheet. **Now is a great time to freeze or refrigerate the coffee cake  dough for later baking.**  Take a pair of clean scissors and slice into the dough leaving about 3/4-inch of dough still attached.  Slice at 1-inch intervals.  Carefully begin to curve the sliced dough into a semi-circle/horseshoe shape.  If some of the apple juices escape, don’t worry.   Cover with a towel and let rest in a warm place for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Brush dough with egg wash and sprinkle with raw or granulated sugar.  Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through.

Remove from the oven, allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving.  Best served warm with hot coffee.  Coffee cake will last, well wrapped at room temperature, for up to 3 days… or 3 hours.

**  If you decide to freeze the dough, place it in the fridge to thaw the evening before you’d like to bake it.  Once it’s thawed, slice it according to the above directions.  Allow to come to room temperature, and allow to rise for another 30 minutes beyond that.  Wash with egg and sugar, then bake.

**  If you decide to refrigerate the dough, simple take it out of the fridge, slice according to the above directions.  Let come to room temperature, then allow to rise for 30 minutes beyond that.  Brush with egg and sugar, then bake.

Makes 2 loaves

From Joy The Baker

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

I highly suggest you make this apple cinnamon coffee cake right now.  It will fill the house with a lovely cinnamon fragrance that everyone will find comforting 🙂

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

From our kitchen to yours,
Sydney Jones

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