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.
I made both these versions for the challenge. I have shown the pictures of Ria's version as I thought the Indian spices were so unique. I definatly will be making this again!!
FILLED MERINGUE COFFEE CAKE Makes 2 round coffee cakes, each approximately 10 inches in diameter The recipe can easily be halved to make one round coffee cake Ingredients For the yeast 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
10 strands saffron for Ria’s version (Saffron might be hard to find and it’s expensive, so you can substitute with ½ - 1 teaspoon of ground cardamom or ground nutmeg. Or simply leave it plain like Jamie’s version)
For the meringue:
3 large egg whites at room temperature
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup (110 g / 4 oz.) sugar
For the filling: Jamie’s version:
1 cup (110 g / 4 oz.) chopped pecans or walnuts 2 Tablespoons (30 g / 1 oz.) granulated sugar ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 cup (170 g / 6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips or coarsely chopped chocolate
Ria’s version: 1 cup (130 g / 5 oz.) chopped cashew nuts 2 Tablespoons (30 g / 1 oz.) granulated sugar ½ teaspoon garam masala (You can make it at home – recipe below - or buy from any Asian/Indian grocery store) 1 cup (170g / 6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips ( I used Ghirardelli) Egg wash: 1 beaten egg Cocoa powder (optional) and confectioner’s sugar (powdered/icing sugar) for dusting cakes **Garam (means “hot”) masala (means “mixture”) is a blend of ground spices and is used in most Indian savory dishes. It is used in limited quantities while cooking vegetables, meats & eggs. There is no “one” recipe for it as every household has a recipe of their own. Below, I am going to share the recipe which I follow. 4 or 5 sticks (25 g) Cinnamon Sticks (break a stick and open the scroll) 3 ½ tablespoons (25 g / less than an ounce) Cloves, whole 100 g. (3.5 oz.) Fennel seeds 4 tablespoons (25 g / less than an ounce) Cumin seeds 1 ½ tablespoons (10 g / less than half an ounce) Peppercorns 25 g (less than half an ounce) Green Cardamom pods In a small pan on medium heat, roast each spice individually (it hardly takes a minute) until you get a nice aroma. Make sure you stir it throughout so that it doesn’t burn. As soon as each spice is roasted, transfer it to a bowl to cool slightly. Once they are all roasted, grind into a fine powder by using a coffee grinder, or pestle & mortar. Store in an airtight container and use as needed. I made the splurge and purchased saffron and the spices. I mixed the dry together then added the wet and let it proof. Once the dough had proofed I rolled it out. I whipped up the egg whites and spread it over the dough and added the spices, nuts and chocolate.
I rolled the dough up and formed it into a circle and cut slits into the dough. I allowed it to proof and then I baked it at 350 for about 45 minutes. I sprinkled powdered sugar over the whole coffee cake once it was out of the oven.