If you've had the opportunity to go to a pastry or bread shop, you may have spent plenty of time marveling over the beautifully decorated baked items they sell. I've found myself doing this many times. I especially love watching a pastry chef or cake decorator at work, watching them create edible masterpieces, which are almost too beautiful to eat.
I'd like to pass along the ingredients for a coffeecake that's as pretty as it is good-tasting. "Fanned Coffeecake" looks very decorative and even looks like you spent a lot of time working on it....but you don't! It gets its name because the dough is "fanned" out, exposing the center of the strips of dough. It's a quick-bread type coffeecake and is filled with your favorite flavor of jam or preserves. It's iced with a confectioner's sugar icing and it really looks decorative!
This is not a hard recipe to do. The only thing that you may be uncertain of is forming it into a fan shape, and that itself really isn't hard to do at all. It goes together easily and it will be devoured fast once people taste it. The pastry has butter and cream cheese in it, which gives it a rich flavor and compliments the jam or preserves inside it. Any flavor of jam or preserves can be used, though I like to use strawberry preserves. Serve this with plenty of hot coffee or tea when you have company and your guests will be impressed!
Last year I shared a coffeecake that's also special, in that it has crushed Heath Bar candy in it. This recipe for "Heath Bar Coffeecake" can be found at this link, if you don't already have it:
Who says you have to be a pastry chef to create a great coffeecake? Prove how easily it can be done by following this recipe:
- 2-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 (3 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1/4 cup shortening
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup jam or preserves, any flavor
- 1/4 cup pecans
- Confectioner's sugar icing (recipe follows)
Stir together the dry ingredients. With a pastry cutter, two knives or a fork, cut in the cream cheese, butter and shortening to make a fairly coarse mixture. Add the milk and stir to form a dough. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 2 minutes. Roll out dough to a 12x8 inch rectangle and place on a greased baking sheet. Spread jam to cover 2/3 of the rectangle lengthwise. Sprinkle with pecans. Fold the third of the rectangle without the jam over the center. Fold over again, making three layers of dough and two layers of filling. Seal the edges. From the folded side, cut dough into 1-inch slices to within 1 inch of the opposite side. Twist the strips so that the cut side is up. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack for 10 minutes and drizzle with the following Confectioner's Sugar Icing:
- 1 cup confectioner's sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients until smooth.