Cooking With Leo
Leo's Coffee Cake
This is a world famous recipe (mine of course, who else could make something world famous?) And, you will have to use all the ingredients as specified and follow the directions to the letter for this to be the very best creation you will ever make. This recipe was handed down to me from my Teutonic predecessors who invaded Rome early in the 5th Century and stole it from Ignatius who was plagiarizing it from Caesar's 'Handy Handbook for Housewives and other Concubines'. Not knowing how to read Latin they gave it to Patrick who tried it and fed it to the snakes, they in turn all jumped into the North Sea in sheer delight. After he found out it took the bite out of Irish whiskey, he thought it would be better with Irish Coffee. Thus it came into the possession of my dear Irish Grandmother, who could not even boil water, and thinking I was a gifted child she passed it on to me to interpret the inherent influences of the various ingredients combined into the crucial creation.
Thus you now will be privy to ONE of Leo's connection's creations.
This is what you will need:
2 cups of milk (not skim, or nonfat junk, just real cow stuff)
1 cake yeast, or if using the dry stuff in little bags use the
equivalent of a cake of yeast.
2 cups sugar
5 cups of flour, sifted (for fine texture you might even sift it twice)
1 ½ sticks butter (not cooking oil, not margarine, real cow stuff)
1 teaspoon salt.
This is how you have to do it:
Warm ½ cup of milk, about 100 to 110 degrees, put the yeast into it with a spoon of the sugar.
Set aside for it to work for about 10 or 15 minutes while you do the following:
Combine the sugar, salt, eggs, 1 stick of butter, the rest of the milk and 2 cups of flour into a large mixing bowl, make sure the butter is warm enough to blend into the batter.
Mix well with a wooden spoon until all the ingredients are combined.
Now pour in the Yeast mixture, and mix that in.
Set this aside, cover with a towel in a warm place, and let rise for about 2 hours.
Now for the next step, add the remaining flour slowly while kneading the dough by hand. You may not have to use all the rest of the flour, but you should add it as you knead and work it in until the dough does not stick to the side of the mixing bowl or your hand Now spoon a little melted butter over the top of the dough, cover and let rise again. When about double in size, dump it out on a floured board and punch down. Divide the dough in half and roll it down into 2 round pieces that will fit into two 9 inch cake pans.
Set aside while you preheat the oven to 400 degrees, also while waiting for the oven to heat you can decide on the following toppings for your cake.
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
½ stick soft butter
1 tsp cinnamon
Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and mix by rolling between your hands.
Sprinkle on top of cake before baking.
Plum or peach topping:
About 6 to eight plums, or 4 or 5 peaches,
Sugar, butter, and cinnamon.
Slice fruit into eights for plums or about 12 pieces for average size peaches, lay out on top of cake in a circular pattern and sprinkle with a little sugar and cinnamon and small bits of butter.
Other toppings can use apples, cherries, apricots, but do not use canned fruit always get fresh fruit and slice into wedges. If using hard apples, thinner slices are best, cherries need to be pitted and sliced in half. Apricots which are softer only need to be sliced in quarters. Whatever fruit you use, always sprinkle butter bits, sugar, and cinnamon on top.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Check after 20 minutes to see that toppings are not browning or cooking too fast, Reduce heat to 250 degrees and let bake for another 30 to 40 minutes. Crumb cake should be done within 30 minutes; fruit toppings require a little longer baking time.
Now you can get some good hot, black coffee,
Pour in some heavy cream,
A shot of Irish whiskey,
And enjoy the day.