- 3-1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 envelopes Fleischmann's® Quick Rise Yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup water
- 1/3 cup butter OR margarine, cut into pieces
- 3 large eggs
- Date Cheese Filling (recipe follows)
- Crumb Topping, optional (recipe follows)
- Combine 1 cup flour, sugar, undissolved yeast, and salt in a large mixer bowl. Heat water and butter until very warm (120 to 130oF). Gradually add to flour mixture; beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Add 2 eggs and 1/2 cup flour; beat 2 minutes at high speed, scraping bowl occasionally. With spoon, stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 6 to 8 minutes. Cover; let rest on floured surface 10 minutes.
- Divide dough in half; roll each half to 12 x 7-inch rectangle. Place on 2 greased baking sheets. Spread half of Date Cheese Filling over center-third (lengthwise portion) of each rectangle. Along 12-inch sides of each coffee cake, cut 12 (1-inch-wide) strips from edge of filling to edge of dough. Alternating sides, fold strips at an angle across filling. *Cover; let rise in warm place until doubled in size, about 30 to 45 minutes.
- Beat remaining egg; brush on dough. Sprinkle with Crumb Topping, if desired. Bake at 375°F for 30 to 35 minutes; cover with foil during last 10 minutes to prevent excess browning. Remove from sheets; let cool on wire racks.
- Date Cheese Filling: In small bowl, combine 12 ounces softened cream cheese, 1/3 cup sugar, and 1 egg white; beat with an electric mixer until mixture is smooth. Stir in 1 cup imported chopped or snipped pitted dates, 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour, and 1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel.
- Crumb Topping: In small bowl, combine 1/2 cup all-purpose flour and 3 tablespoons sugar. Stir in 3 tablespoons softened butter or margarine until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
*To freeze: After shaping coffee cakes, cover tightly with plastic wrap; place in freezer. When firm, remove braids from baking sheets; wrap airtight in plastic wrap, freezer bag, or heavy-duty aluminum foil. Return to freezer for up to 4 weeks. When ready to bake, remove from freezer.