Home baked whole wheat bread was common when I was growing up. My mother, who was born to bake as my husband says, loved to make yeast breads. She would divide the dough into 3 parts. Two became loaves and the other became a delicious coffee cake. My sister also makes wonderful coffee cakes and brings one to me every time she visits. A few years ago, I decided to treat my family to these delicious cakes on a regular basis, and my weekly bread baking became like mom’s: 2 loaves and one coffee cake! It has become a regular Saturday activity for me, but they are not eaten until Sunday morning breakfast!
Sour dough starter is not as difficult as it may sound. I have found it to be very forgiving even when I’ve neglected it for several weeks because I was just too busy to feed the starter and make my bread!
I will include the recipe for the starter and for making the bread and coffee cake.
In a one-quart mason jar pour 1 c. hot tap water; 1/2 c. sugar; 3 tbsp. potato flakes; and 2 tsp. yeast. Stir well. Screw on the lid and leave the jar sitting out for 12 hours. Refrigerate for a few days. Feed the starter a day or so before you want to make bread. To feed, add 1 c. hot tap water; 1/2 c. sugar and 3 tbsp. potato flakes. Stir well and cover. Leave out on counter for 12 hours. Refrigerate or use to make bread. I usually feed my starter after I have taken out what I need for my bread. Make sure to keep it in the fridge after the 12 hours on the counter!
1-1/2 c. starter (stir or shake the jar before measuring out what you need.)
1 c. hot tap water
1/2 c. oil
1/2 c. sugar
1 tbsp. salt
1-1/2 tsp. yeast
Put all these ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Stir well to dissolve sugar and yeast. Add approximately 2-3 cups of flour, mixing well. Add more flour, about 3 more cups, and mix well. Dough should be stiff. Turn out on floured counter and knead dough for about 10 minutes. Spray oil in mixing bowl and place dough in bowl. Cover with light-weight towel and put in warm place to rise until doubled. I put mine in a warm oven. It can take 6-8 hours for the dough to rise.
Punch dough down and divide into thirds. Grease or use spray oil on two medium loaf pans. Place two of the dough pieces in these pans. Grease a 9-inch cake pan. Take the third piece of dough and roll it out on a floured counter to about 12×16 or so size. Spread softened butter all over the dough. Sprinkle brown sugar on top of the butter. The amount you use is up to you! Sprinkle cinnamon on top of the brown sugar. Any remaining ingredients for the filling are whatever you choose. Suggestions: chopped pecans; raisins; chopped almonds; dried cranberries; chocolate chips or any combination. Roll the dough up beginning on the 12 inch side. Pinch the seam to keep tight. Lift the roll and place into the prepared cake pan forming a circle with the seam side down. Pinch ends together. Using a pair of kitchen shears, snip through the dough all the way around the circle, about 1-1/2 inches apart. Place loaves and coffee cake in warm place to rise, about 6-8 hours.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Turn out on cooling racks to cool. The bread makes delicious toast!
Drizzle the coffee cake with confectioner’s sugar glaze.