After the pasty, coffee cake is among the greatest achievement of the culinary world. It combines our love for coffee into a highly sweetened sinfully good dessert. The only problem is that many of us are trying to cut back on the sugar to shed those unwanted pounds. As many of us try to exercise it is scientifically proven that it is the use of both exercise and eating healthy that produce not only effective weight loss but long-term results.
Cakes in general are full of pounds of sugar, butter, and eggs that may taste good, but do nothing for our figure. It is therefore the mission of all great bakers of the world to find alternatives to these overused ingredients and although they cannot be completely eliminated from every morsel of dessert goodness, they can be significantly reduced with the use of products such as stevia and many different yogurts. In addition to stevia and yoge products that mimic the flavor and richness of eggs, but are devoid of the high cholesterol that has plagued natural eggs for their entire existence.
Any good culinary professional will tell you that just because you place all ingredients into a bowl and blend well the results may not turn out quite like the picture you have in your head. Baking is more about science than merely cooking. Therefore there are methods involved in the baking process that may seem insignificant to the untrained individual, but without the use of these methods will result in a catastrophe in the kitchen. One of the most widely used methods is called the creaming method. Most of us have used this method without even knowing it was being used.
The first step in the creaming method is taking the fat and the sugar product and creaming them together. The creaming of these two ingredients forces the butter and the sugar to become one entity and produces the air needed in order for the cake to gain the right amount of rise. This is most commonly butter and sugar within most recipes. The sugar and fat are creamed together until light in colour. While continuing to mix the butter and sugar add in one egg at a time until all are incorporated.
The next step involves sifting together any dry ingredients and combining the remaining wet ingredients in two separate bowls. The final step in the process is to alternate between adding the dry and wet ingredients into the butter, sugar, and egg mixture. This process is slow, but produces a lighter cake as opposed to a dense inedible mess.
Arik Waiss founder of Doppio Coffee (London based Coffee Wholesale company) says ‘In the baking world there are countless ingredients and truly endless amounts of recipes for the common coffee cake. However, once you have mastered the basic method behind the common coffee cake, the sky is the limit as to what types of fruits or other flavouring ingredients that may be added to the recipe’.
The Master Recipe
1 ½ cups Stevia
½ cup Nut Cereal (Grape Nuts is a good example of this type of cereal)
2 teaspoons Instant Espresso
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 ¾ cup Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
½ teaspoon Baking Powder
½ teaspoon Salt
1 cup Fat Free Yogurt
½ cup Butter
½ cup Cholesterol Free Egg Substitute
1 ½ cup Powdered Sugar
2 Tablespoons Brewed Coffee
- Preheat your oven to 350. The primary reason many baked goods flounder is improper oven temperature. Your oven must be at the correct temperature in order for the cake to properly rise. The initial rise in the baking process is known as oven spring.
- As previously discussed, cream together stevia and butter followed by adding one egg at a time. For this part only use 1 cup of the stevia.
- Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- Alternate adding dry ingredients and yogurt until all are combined.
- In a small bowl mix together ½ cup stevia, cereal, espresso, and cinnamon until well combined.
- Add half of your batter to a prepared baking dish. Top that half with the cereal mixture and finish with last half of the batter.
- Bake for approximately 45 minutes. You can check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the centre. If it comes out clean you have a finished coffee cake.
- The final step is to combine the prepared coffee and the powdered sugar. This is the glaze for the cake.
With many cooks seeing a huge list of ingredients can be intimidating. Before not taking on a recipe simply because it looks complicated, look at the actual ingredients and the method behind the recipe. You may be surprised to learn that most of the ingredients you will already have on hand and the method will most likely be the creaming method which as we have discussed is relatively easy. Healthy eating does not have to be complicated. It is all about finding alternative ingredients for the high fat ingredients in standard sweet recipes and looking for that healthy balance between flavour and our diet plan.