Thursday, January 13, 2011

Chocolate and Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake

This coffee cake was a real delight to have over the weekend - it was moist, beautiful and the swirl gave it that something special you look for in a weekend treat. When I first moved to North America and heard about coffee cakes, I was disappointed to find that they didn't taste like coffee at all. Cutting a piece and enjoying it with a warm cup of coffee brings the coffee flavor into the cake though and makes it just about the perfect balance of flavors. I've tasted a lot of coffee through the years and visited a lot, a lot of coffee shops while traveling. My favourite to date has to be Blue Bottle in San Francisco- their cold brewed coffee has to be the best I've ever had. Lately, however, some coffee shops have started taking themselves too seriously and that can take away from the experience of relaxing and enjoying one of the best drinks there is. I greatly value a warm and cozy ambiance when getting an afternoon cup of coffee but have found that many coffee shops have, sadly, become pretentious and have ended up making coffee seem inaccessible and and an art not everyone can understand.

On a recent trip to New York, I was happy I found Stumptwon Coffee Roasters at the Ace Hotel. This place is worth the trip if only for the eclectic decor of the hotel itself- it's filled with worn in furniture, low lights and different nooks and crannies to comfortably sit in. The cappuccino I had there was the smoothest and frothiest coffee I've had. It really was. They also had velvety iced coffee and fleur de sel chocolate bars. We also sampled some of the treats there and their pretzel-like bread filled with ham, sharp cheese and mustard was absolutely amazing. I will definitely be making my way back to the Ace Hotel when I go to New York next.

Chocolate and Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake

Adapted from Baked, I made the cake in a round cake pan instead

Crumb Topping
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup of hazelnuts
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch pieces

Chocolate Cinnamon Swirl
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon dark unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
16 ounces sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Crumb Topping:
Put the flour, sugar, and salt in bowl of food processor and pulse to combine. Add the hazelnuts and pulse until they are finely chopped and incorporated. Add the butter and pulse until mixture looks like coarse sand. Cover and refrigerate.

Chocolate Cinnamon Swirl:
Mix ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

Sour Cream Cake:
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Butter a 9×13-inch baking pan. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until smooth. Scrape down bowl and add sugar. Beat until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping bowl as needed.
Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat just until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in three additions, scraping down the bowl before each addition and beating only until each addition is just incorporated. Do not overmix.
Pour one third of the cake batter into the prepared pan. Use an offset spatula to spread batter evenly in pan. Sprinkle half of the chocolate cinnamon swirl mixture over batter, covering the entire surface of the batter. Spoon half of remaining batter over the swirl mixture and spread it evenly. Top with remaining swirl mixture, then the remaining batter, and spread the batter evenly. Sprinkle the crumb topping evenly over the top of the batter.
Bake in the center of the oven for one hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Serves 16.


Megan said...

That coffee cake is beautiful. I like that there are hazelnuts in the topping rather than walnuts or pecans, which are more typical.

Torviewtoronto said...

delicious cake look wonderful

vanillasugar said...

oh how i love the Baked boys.
your cake is jsut perfect. your photos are always just so stunning, and just right.

Mini Baker said...

you are so lucky! i've always wanted to try a mast brothers chocolate bar! their story is amazing :)
bookmarking this coffee cake :)

sally said...

I love your milk container! It looks perfect next to your beautiful coffee cake.

Anonymous said...

I haven't been to the Ace in NYC but I stayed at the Ace in Palm Springs this past year and adored the decor. This coffee cake looks fabulous. I'm all for anything with the Baked stamp on it!

Katie said...

Looks gorgeous! I love how its got three swirly layers - yummy!

Sommer J said...

Looks absolutely perfect!

Caroline said...

The cake (and swirls) are beautiful and anytime I'm allowed to have cake for breakfast is a winner for me! YUM!

Evan @swEEts said...

This coffee cake looks delicious and so does that sandwich! I just got the book Baked so I'll be sure to check out this recipe :)

Lisa@ButteryBooks said...

Great pictures! The cake looks delicious. In Texas, it is hard to find a seat at the laid back coffee shops because everybody is on their computers...bloggers I assume.

Nisrine | Dinners and Dreams said...

Gorgeous coffee cake. The chocolate makes it unique as it's not typically paired with cinnamon. I liked that.

Kay Heritage said...

This looks absolutely delightful! Lovely photos, too! :)

Anonymous said...

This cake looks fantastic!

Kate Morgan Jackson said...

Okay, so your photography just continues to amaze and inspire me. Just plain gorgeous.

Anonymous said...

I am a recent coffee convert but still completely agree about the ambiance meaning so much in a coffee shop! That cake is gorgeous, I love how you layered it to make it tall instead of the standard single layer!

Angie said...

love the milk container as well..

Wesley Shaw said...

Obviously I'm not the only one who loves the milk container, where did you find this?? Do you know who makes it? Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I love all the recipes I have tried from the Baked book. This coffee cake looks delicious...I definitely need to make this soon! :)

lynne said...

Yum! Your cake looks amazing! I love the glass milk carton, btw!

Grace said...

I've tried some of the recipes from the gentleman that wrote this book and I absolutely loved them. This coffee cake looks amazing. There was a write up in the Food and Travel magazine (November issue) on these gentleman, great story about their journey. Looking forward to purchasing the cookbook.

Anonymous said...

Check out Amazon for the cute milk carton! Half Pint - Mini Carton Creamer.
The coffee cake looks perfect!

Claudie said...

Your coffee cake looks just perfect: the texture, the shape, everything.

I also understand what you mean by expecting coffee cake to taste like coffee... I had the same belief when I came to the USA too. Still, I guess once we taste how tasty it is, we quickly get over the disappointment, right?

Wayne Artmann said...

Did you use a springform pan to bake this cake? If so, what size did you use?

delphcotecuisine said...

gorgeous ann yummy
lovely pics too

Carolyn Jung said...

Great coffee and an irresistible slab of coffee cake -- now that's the way to start off the day. Yum! I mean, how could any day turn bad when it begins that sweet, right? ;)

foodie and the chef said...

Oh that looks to-die-for, and your photos are just beautiful ! I will lap up any dessert with coffee in it; I just can't seem to get enough of the liquid gold :)

Sophia said...

Yummy! This cake looks delicious! You should consider entering it into Recipe4Living's 5th Birthday Recipe Contest! The site is turning 5 years old, and we're giving away a Scharffen Berger gift basket to the top birthday cake that's submitted!

Tryabreathmint said...

I love the glass milk container, such creative fusion of form and function. The coffee cake looks delicious, thanks for sharing the recipe

Meaghan Luby said...

that is beautiful. so simple and delicious! i cannot wait to make this!!!

i love your blog, i just came across it, this is spectacular!

thanks for posting :)

A rootdigger said...


Tanvi@Sinfully Spicy said...

Beautiful Cake with chocolate and cinnamon..Love the pictures.

♥Sugar♥Plum♥Fairy♥ said...

Oh i soo want the cake and now:-)
Sooo pretty a cake and delightful too !
And an absolutely wonderful blog!
UR pics are crystal clear and colors perfect!
I know its u , but would love to know what cam u use:-))
Which Baked is this adaptd from?
Thannxx a ton and wodnerful day!

Anonymous said...

The cake is just achingly gorgeous!! And your photography is amazing!! Thanks for leaving a trail on my blog so I can bookmark and stalk this page officially!

Anonymous said...

How did I miss this post of yours? The cake looks toothsome, just delish. I fall short of just having one serving, my rule, when it comes to coffee cake.

elia@feedyoursister said...

THis sounds delicious, I love coffee cake!! I just made a similar kind of cake with chocolate chips, sugar, cinnamon, and pecans in the middle of a pound cake came out great, will be posting the recipe soon!! Or try this Nutella loaf!!

alba said...

I tried this recipesterday - it's wonderful! - and used a rectangular pan because I didn't think I had a round pan that would work. May I ask what kind of pan you used to make yours? Thanks!

Chocolate Shavings said...

alba: I used a springform pan (like the kind you would use to make cheesecake). I'm glad you enjoyed the cake!

Elia@FeedYourSister said...

Hi again, so I finally got around to making this cake, and I was so excited, but now I'm sad...i used a loaf pan bc I didn't have a round pan, and it completely overflowed all over the place, now no crumble topping is left on top of the cake! Boo! However, I tasted the fallen cake pieces and it's delicious.

I'm interested to know how high you filled the spring-form pan and how yours didn't overflow like mine?!?!

Also the recipe makes a huge amount of, crumble and batter, I'd say definitely enough to bake two loaves if I fill it half way up and then I probably wouldn't get overflow, right?

Please help!

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