Oh That Mouse!

I got up this morning, headed to the kitchen to make a cup of coffee, and what did my bleary eyes see?

It’s HALF gone! I just baked that yesterday afternoon… LATE afternoon at that! I couldn’t believe my eyes…

But then a furtive movement caught my eye.

Miss Myrtle. Of course. And I was getting ready to yell at Jim for eating so much Kugelhopf!

Here is the original recipe from America’s Test Kitchen. My modifications are slight. I add 1 teaspoon of almond extract to the dough, and 1/4 teaspoon Fiori Di Sicilia to my dough, and I simply dump all the ingredients into my bread machine and let it mix the dough. I also frost it versus sprinkling it with powdered sugar.

Cherry and Almond Kugehopf

2/3 cup dried cherries, chopped coarse
1/3 cup golden raisins
¼ cup kirsch or other cherry-flavored brandy
3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup whole milk, room temperature
3 large eggs, room temperature
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
8 tablespoons butter, softened
¼ cup sliced almonds

Microwave cherries, raisins and kirsch in covered bowl until steaming, about 1 minute. Let sit until cherries and raisins have softened, about 15 minutes. Drain fruit and reserve kirsch.

Whisk flour, yeast and salt together in bowl of stand mixer. Whisk milk, eggs, granulated sugar and reserved kirsch in 4-cup liquid measuring cup until sugar has dissolved. Using dough hook on low speed, slowly add milk mixture to flour mixture and mix until cohesive dough starts to form and no dry flour remains, about 2 minutes, scraping down bowl as needed.

Increase speed to medium-low and knead until dough begins to pull away from sides of bowl but sticks to bottom, about 5 minutes. With mixer running, add butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, and knead until butter is fully incorporated, about 4 minutes. Continue to knead until dough is elastic and slightly sticky, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low, add fruit mixture and mix until incorporated, about 1 minute. Transfer dough to lightly greased large bowl or container, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let rise for 30 minutes.

Using greased bowl scraper or your fingertips, fold dough over itself by gently lifting and folding edge of dough toward middle. Turn bowl 90 degrees and fold dough again; repeat turning bowl and folding dough two more times (total of four folds). Cover tightly with plastic and let rise for 30 minutes. Fold dough again, then cover bowl tightly with plastic and let dough rise until nearly doubled in size, 1 to 1 ½ hours.

Grease 12-cup nonstick Bundt pan and sprinkle bottom with almonds. Press down on dough to deflate, then transfer to lightly floured counter. Using your lightly floured hands, press dough into 8-inch round.

Using your fingertips, press through and stretch center of dough to create 2-inch hole.

Place dough in prepared pan and gently press into even thickness. Cover loosely with greased plastic and let rise until loaf is level with lip of pan, 2 to 2 ½ hours.

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position, and heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake until golden brown and loaf registers 190 to 195 degrees, 25 to 30 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Let loaf cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert loaf onto wire rack and let cool completely, about 3 hours. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.

This one is Jim’s favorite. As evidenced. Apparently, it’s Miss Myrtle’s favorite too!

CJ Tinkle

Your feedback is always welcome! If you have a question, I will respond to it here.