Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Bon Appetit Desserts: Chocolate-Pecan Coffee Cake

Wow! It has been a long while since I have been able to bake and post a recipe. I'm already in my second week of summer break, but last week was spent recovering from a food borne illness that I got at Disneyland's California Adventure. It was not pleasant and was not how I pictured spending my first week out of school. I am currently in my 4th week of my first grad class and I am feeling the heat. Today was the first day that I felt like I didn't have a ba-jillion assignments to do.

I celebrated by baking!

When reading the ingredients and procedure you might find yourself thinking, "A raisin and cream cheese topping with sugared pecans... on a chocolate cake?" I know that I did and you know what? It totally works!!

Chocolate-Pecan Coffee Cake


1          8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature

1/4       cup powdered sugar

1          large egg yolk

2/3       cup golden raisins


5          ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped (I just used chocolate chips)

3/4       cup (packed) golden brown sugar

1-1/2    cups sifted unbleached all purpose flour (sifted, then measured)

3/4       teaspoon salt

6          Tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, diced

1/3       cup warm water (105ºF to 115ºF)

1          teaspoon sugar

1          1/4-ounce envelope active dry yeast

1          large egg, room temperature

6          Tablespoons milk, room temperature


1          large egg white

1/2       cup sugar

1          cup pecan halves

**This cake must rise for an hour! Plan ahead.**

TOPPING: Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar, and egg yolk in small bowl to blend. Mix in raisins.

CAKE: Butter 9x9x2-inch metal baking pan. Finely grind chocolate and brown sugar in processor. transfer to bowl. Blend flour, cocoa, and salt in processor 5 seconds. Add butter; using on/off turns, chop finely. (I do not have a processor. I just whisked these ingredients and then cut the butter in.)

Combine 1/3 cup warm water, sugar, and yeast in large bowl. Stir to dissolve yeast. let stand until foamy, about 8 minutes. Mix in egg, milk, chocolate mixture, and flour mixture. Spread batter in prepared pan. Drop topping over batter by tablespoonfuls and spread carefully to cover.

pour boiling water in bottom of 8x8-inch pan to depth of 1-1/2 inches. Place pan with dough over pan with water. Cover pan with dough lightly with plastic wrap, then kitchen towel. Let stand until dough has risen, about 1 hour.

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350ºF.

PECANS: Meanwhile, beat egg white and sugar in medium bowl until thick. Add pecan halves and stir until well coated.

Arrange pecans, rounded side up, atop cake in irregular pattern (discard excess sugar mixture). bake cake until tester inserted into center comes out with just a few crumbs attached, about 35 minutes. (Keep and eye out, my cake needed 50 minutes.) Cool cake in pan on rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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