This is my all-purpose coffee cake recipe that our family loves. I can vary the filling and shape it to create a different cake each time. The basic procedures are the same for whatever filling you choose. Seasonal fruit filling is also a delicious option and you will have a different cake each time.
All-Purpose Coffee Cake
This dough will make 2 coffee cakes.
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 packages (1/4 ounce each) instant yeast
1/2 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
4 cups all-purpose flour
Directions for making the dough:
Combine all of the dough ingredients in an electric mixer with the paddle attachment. Switch to the dough hook and knead until a soft, smooth dough forms, about 5 minutes. Allow the dough to rise, covered, for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until it’s puffy (though not necessarily doubled in bulk).
Each filling recipe will make enough for two cakes. If you want to make different fillings for each cake, you would need to make the entire recipe, divide it in half and freeze one half for another time. Just making half of the cake filling recipe does not work out proportionally.
1 1/2 cups peeled and chopped apricots, peaches, apples, pineapple, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or whatever is in season
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
Directions for fruit filling:
In a medium saucepan combine fruit and water. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, about 5 minutes or until the fruit is tender. Combine the 1/4 cup sugar and cornstarch in a small bowl; stir into fruit. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 2 minutes more; set filling aside.
2/3 cup almond paste
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup finely ground almonds
Directions for almond filling:
Beat the almond paste, butter, sugar and salt until creamy with an electric mixer. Add the egg and extract and beat until well incorporated. Mix in the flour and almonds. Set aside.
Cream Cheese Filling
1 package (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Directions for cheese filling:
Beat all of the ingredients together in an electric mixer until smooth. Chill till ready to use.
Roll, Fill And Shape Dough:
There are any number of shapes that you can use to form the dough. This dough can be shaped into two rings, two horseshoes, two braids or two long logs.
Cover two rimmed baking pans with parchment paper.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and divide it in half. Roll each half into a 15 x 10-inch rectangle.
Spread half of the filling on each rolled out dough, leaving a half-inch border all around the dough.
Starting with the long side, roll up jelly roll style. To form a horseshoe: seal the ends and the long seam. Place the roll, seam side down on the prepared pan and shape into a crescent/ horseshoe. Repeat with the second dough. Cut slits with kitchen scissors through the top of the dough at two-inch intervals.
Cover and let the coffee cakes rise in a warm place until doubled, about an hour.
Bake in a preheated oven set to 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes until golden, switching the pans halfway through the baking time. Cool cakes on a wire rack.
One cake can be frozen unglazed until needed.
Enough for two coffee cakes.
2 cups powdered sugar
2 to 4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract
Combine glaze ingredients, divide in half and drizzle over the cooled cakes.