I started with the filling a day early. The recipe calls for ground walnuts (but I am sure almonds, pecans, or macadamia nuts can be used with equal success), sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, heavy cream, maple syrup, vanilla, and egg whites. Quite a list but don't let that scare you away. Aside from the egg whites the ingredients come together very easily in a food processor. The egg whites are added to the mixture after they are whipped. I put the mixture in the refrigerator overnight.
I don't dabble heavily into yeast based recipes because my success rate is usually 50-50. I know, I know success comes with experience. Ok, I really just want a little better odds! Anyway the chicken that I am would have ran the other way at the sight of the "y" word. Lately however, I embrase them still keeping my fingers and toes crossed though.
The sweet yeast dough ingredients are flour, sugar, yeast, salt, milk, butter, vanilla, and eggs. The instructions are a little different in that the yeast is added to the dry ingredients without proofing first. However, to my suprise and relief it worked.
The most impressive part of this project is forming the coffee cake. When the dough is ready it is rolled into a 16x12 rectangle, divided into three vertical strips by gently poking it with a fork. The filling is spread down the middle section. More strips are cut horizontally into the side flaps. Then one by one alternating sides the strips are folded over the filling. The results are a very impressive braid.
The cake comes out of the oven a beautiful golden color with a delicious aroma. A simple sugar glaze is spread over the top for that added shine. This cake is very good and I surely won't hesitate to make it again. Great choice Hanaa!