Thursday, October 9, 2014

Almond Topped Cream Cheese Ring

We're really looking forward to the weekend I'm sure most everyone is! We're excited because we're welcoming "western" family back home to Ohio. My hubby's family all live "abroad" - Colorado, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arizona- so our visits with them are unfortunately few and far between. We don't get around much and they don't get back much, so our relationships with most of them are confined to emails, Facebook and old-fashioned letters and phone calls. Rare, but wonderful, are the days when we get to actually put our arms around them, laugh and reminisce with them or share a meal. 

This weekend we'll only have a couple of short hours with our Colorado sister-in-law and our Arizona niece, but we're planning on making the most of it. The fam is gathering here for a light lunch, where it's going to be more about the visiting than the "vittles" - lol! Right now, the menu will include my quiche and this easy-to-make and beautiful-to-behold coffee cake ring. The plan is for everything to be everyone (including me!) can really just kick back and enjoy each other's company.....'cause it might be a while before we see each other again! 

                    Almond-Topped Cream Cheese Ring                 

1 Tbsp/ pkg. Red Star Platinum yeast
1/3 Cup warm water
2 Cups unbleached all-purpose flour or bread flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 egg
2 Tbsp. butter, softened
1/2 tsp. salt

3 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 ½ Tbsp. all-purpose unbleached flour
1/3 Cup apricot preserves, or preserves of your choice

1 Egg, beaten (for brushing loaf)
2-3 Tbsp. sliced almonds

Place yeast in EZ DOH bucket. Add warm water and stir. Let sit for 1-2 minutes to activate. Add 1 cup of flour, then remaining ingredients. EZ DOH-it until dough is smooth and elastic, adding additional unbleached flour if necessary. Remove dough from bucket. Spray bucket lightly with cooking spray, replace dough in bucket and cover. Let rise until doubled.
Mix cream cheese and 1 ½ Tbsp. flour while dough is rising.
 Remove dough from bucket. Spray a 9” round cake pan with cooking spray. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out to a 15” circle. Gently place dough in pan, fitting it to size and letting some of the dough hang over the sides. Spread the cream cheese mix over the dough in the pan. Spread preserves over cream cheese mix. Make cuts in the dough hanging over the sides, spacing them 1” apart- cut to ½” above the filling. Working 2 strips at a time, twist the overhanging dough strips together and then fold them over the filling. Cover and let rise until doubled. 
Heat oven to 375. Brush the beaten egg over the coffee cake and then sprinkle with the almonds. Bake 30 minutes, or until golden. Cool before cutting.
(I’m thinking this might be delicious with fresh blueberries sprinkled over the cream cheese mix…… to try it!)
 Adapted from Betty Crocker’s “Best Bread Machine Recipes”  
Visit:  for more delicious breads! 


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