What I Did During Snowzilla, Part II: Jam-Filled Sour Cream Coffee Bread

After making a real braided sweet bread, I decided to try a mock braid, King Arthur Flour's Jam-Filled Sour Cream Coffee Bread. To make the dough, you just dump all of the ingredients into a mixing bowl (all-purpose flour, sugar, salt, sour cream, softened butter, an egg yolk, buttery sweet dough flavor, lukewarm water, and instant yeast) and knead until smooth. I used a Kitchenaid mixer so it was no effort at all.

You let the dough rise and the divide it into two equal parts; this recipe yields two loaves of bread. You roll out each piece into a rectangle and spread two thin layers of filling down the center third of each: first a layer of strawberry jam mixed with flour; and then a cheese filling made from cream cheese, softened butter, sugar, salt, buttery sweet dough flavor, flour, and egg. You make perpendicular cuts along both sides of the filling and then fold the resulting strips over the filling in the center, alternating from one side to the other, to form the mock braid. Then after another rise, a brush of thinned egg wash, and a sprinkling of coarse sugar, the loaves are ready to bake.
I was not reading the recipe very closely and made two errors. One was just cosmetic -- I neglected to fold in the ends of the dough over the filling before forming the mock braid, so the ends of my loaves were open. But I also made a more serious omission. As I was tidying up the kitchen while I was waiting for the second rise of the shaped loaves, I noticed an errant egg on the kitchen counter. As part of my mise en place, I always take out the exact number of eggs I need for whatever I'm baking and let them come to room temperature. So having an extra egg sitting around after I'm finished is a sign that something is wrong. As I scanned through the recipe again, I realized that I had forgotten to add the egg to the cream cheese filling. Whoops! But it was too late to do anything about it so I forged ahead.

The loaves looked great coming out of the oven, with a nice golden brown crust. My bread didn't look much like the photo accompanying the recipe -- it was domed and there were gaps between the strips of the mock braid that exposed the filing inside.
Thankfully, the bread still tasted good, even with the egg missing from the filling. But I think an egg would have helped give the filling some more volume. This bread was certainly beautiful, but I think it looked better than it tasted -- the flavor was not particularly memorable (unlike, say, these Danishes, which I still long for). In part, I think the ratio of filling to bread was a little low, and I would have liked the bread to be a fluffier. But my neighbors were still very appreciative to get their homemade baked goods snow day deliveries!

Recipe: "Jam-Filled Sour Cream Coffee Bread" from King Arthur Flour.

Previous Post: "What I Did During Snowzilla Part I: Cranberry Orange Braided Bread," February 15, 2016.