This fancy coffee cake is surprisingly easy. It makes a great gift. —Kathy McCreary, Wichita, Kansas
- 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
- 1 cup warm milk (110° to 115°)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4-1/2 to 5 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cans (16 ounces each) pitted tart cherries, well drained
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 to 2 tablespoons milk
- In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, sugar, butter, egg, salt and 2 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
- Turn onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Line two baking sheets with foil and grease well; set aside. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Roll each portion into a 14-in. x 7-in. rectangle. Spread cherries over dough to within 1/2 in. of edges. Combine the flour, brown sugar and pecans; sprinkle over cherries.
- Roll up jelly-roll style, starting with a long side; pinch seams and tuck ends under. Place seam side down on prepared baking sheets; pinch ends together to form a ring. With kitchen scissors, cut from outside edge two-thirds of the way toward center of ring at 1-in. intervals. Separate strips slightly and twist to allow filling to show. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
- Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks.
- In a small bowl, combine the confectioners' sugar, vanilla and enough milk to achieve desired consistency; drizzle over warm coffee cakes. Yield: 2 coffee cakes.
Originally published as Cherry-Go-Round in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2001, p43
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