Saturday, January 24, 2009

Candy Cane Coffee Cake

Candy Cane Coffee Cake

Braided and fruit-filled, these shapely coffee cakes are perfect for entertaining or giving as gifts. This delicious recipe is from the award-winning Betty Crocker’s Best Christmas Cookbook.

Prep Time: 30 min
Total Time: 1 hour 50 min
Makes: 3 coffee cakes (12 slices each)

2 packages regular or quick active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105°F to 115°F)
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
2 eggs
5 1/2 to 6 cups Gold Medal® Better for Bread™ flour or Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt
1 pint of preserves, jam, or jelly
1 - 8 oz pkg cream cheese
1 1/2 c powdered sugar

Coffee Cake Glaze
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/8 tsp vanilla
2 T milk

sprinkles, if desired

1. Dissolve yeast in warm water in large bowl. Add buttermilk, sugar, butter, eggs, baking powder, salt and 2 1/2 cups of the flour. Beat with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Stir in enough remaining flour to make dough easy to handle. (Dough should be soft and slightly sticky.)

2. Grease 3 cookie sheets. Turn dough onto well-floured surface; gently knead about 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Divide dough into 3 equal parts. Roll one part into rectangle, 15x9 inches. Place rectangle on cookie sheet.

3. Mix cream cheese and powdered sugar. Spread one-third of the cream cheese mixture in a strip about 2 1/2 inches wide lengthwise down center of rectangle. Spread one-third of the preserves on top of the cream cheese mixture. Make cuts in dough at 1/2-inch intervals on both 15-inch sides almost to filling. Fold strips over filling, overlapping and crossing in center. Carefully stretch dough until 22 inches long; curve one end to form top of cane. Repeat with remaining 2 parts of dough. Cover and let rise in warm place about 1 hour or until double. (Dough is ready if indentation remains when touched.)

4. Heat oven to 375°F. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Mix powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla until smooth. Drizzle Glaze over warm coffee cakes. Decorate with sprinkles.

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