Tuesday, October 4, 2011

(Note: I will be teaching this recipe and three other breakfast treats this weekend in Istanbul.)
If this coffee-infused coffee cake doesn’t perk you up in the morning or give you an afternoon jolt, then I don’t know what will.

A perfect cake for breakfast or tea time!

Coffee cake is a morning treat that I grew up with in the Midwest. I remember both my grandmothers baking their buttery cake-like versions that generally included cinnamon, brown sugar, a hint of coffee and a simple confectioner’s sugar glaze on top.

These coffee cake recipes, passed down from their mothers, possibly evolved from a traditional Kuchen or Gugelhupf recipe, based on my German ancestry. Recipes for coffee cake, as we know it today, first appeared in American cookbooks at the turn of the 20th Century. Original coffee cakes included yeast, flour, eggs, sugar, nuts, dried fruit and sweet spices.

“Much of the American appetite for sweet rolls and cakes comes from these specific Germans as well as from the Holland settlements that had so much influence on early New York, New Jersey and Delaware. All of those colonial cooks made fruity, buttery breakfast or coffee cakes from recipes that vary only slightly from methods used in the twentieth century,” writes Evan Jones in American Food: The Gastronomic Story, 2nd edition.

My German ancestors may have landed in New York in the 1860s, but they ended up settling in the countryside of Nebraska and Iowa.

So I decided to take that simple coffee cake idea that I know and love and modify it. I looked through my cookbooks for inspiration and found one in Caprial’s Desserts that I liked.

If you would like to learn how to make my espresso-flavored coffee cake, join me this Saturday at the Istanbul Culinary Institute for a “Best Breakfast Ideas” class. To sign up for this hands-on baking class, click here.

Afiyet Olsun!
Betcha can't just have one slice of this cake!
Espressolu Kek/Espresso Coffee Cake
Yields: one round bundt cake pan

170 g. (3/4 c.) butter, room temperature
230 g. (1 c.) granulated sugar
2 ea. large eggs
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract

350 g. (2 c.) Turkish un flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ tsp. salt

240 g. (1 c.) süzme yoğurt or sour cream (Note: I thinned out my süzme yoğurt with about 2 tablespoons of krema.)
10 g. (1/8 c.) Nescafe or instant coffee powder
1 T. hot water

Coffee Glaze
150 g. (1 c.) powdered sugar
1 ½ T. whole milk, warmed
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 ½ T. Nescafe or instant coffee powder

1. Preheat oven to 350 F/165 C. Lightly grease a round bundt cake pan or a 9-10-inch cake pan.
2. In a mixing bowl, using a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
3. Slowly add the eggs and vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix well.
4. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Add about half of the flour mixture to the bowl with the butter mixture and mix well.
5. Add half the yogurt or sour cream, and mix well.
6. Add the remaining flour and yogurt, and mix well, making sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
7. In a small bowl, combine the coffee powder with the hot water. Add about one-third of the cake batter to this and mix well, using a rubber spatula.
8. Spread about half of the plain cake batter in the bottom of the cake pan. Top with most of the coffee-flavoured batter, using a spatula or spoon to spread the batter evenly.
9. Add the remaining plain cake and coffee-flavoured batter in alternating layers.
10. Bake until a cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10-15 minutes before inverting the cake onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
11. Make the glaze: in a small mixing bowl, dissolve the coffee powder with the milk and vanilla extract. Whisk in the powdered sugar and mix until combined. If the glaze seems a little thick, add a little more milk. Pour the glaze over the cake.
This glaze mixes up easily.
(Martha Stewart tip: For easy cleanup, set cooling rack with cake over a piece of parchment paper or wax paper; drizzle cake with glaze, and let set before serving.)

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Anonymous said...

Any chance you can translate the amounts into US measures, for us dumb Americans?
Hope you are well!

Sippy Cup Central said...

Wow, I need to try this. It looks like a delicious work of art with a kick! Thanks, Karen

Kim, Living to Seas the Moment said...

I agree with anonymous...American measurements please! I seem to have a lot of company now that I live at the beach and would LOVE to have a great coffee cake to have on hand.

Unknown said...

Hi Joy! this looks just delicious! I am earmarking it for when I have lost 5 lbs!!