Many Moravians--a Germanic people from a region in what for most of the twentieth century has been known as Czechoslovakia--settled in Ohio, southern Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Illinois in the last century. The mashed potatoes give this Moravian coffee cake, which is good for breakfast or an afternoon break, a distinctive, moist texture.


Recipe Summary

30 mins
35 mins
2 hrs 10 mins
3 hrs 15 mins
1 9x13-inch cake


Original recipe yields 16 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified


Instructions Checklist
  • Place potato in a small saucepan with enough water to cover it by 1 inch; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until very tender, 10 to 15 minutes.

  • Transfer potato to a strainer and let sit until completely drained. Force it through a ricer into a bowl. Stir in 2 tablespoons warm water.

  • Proof yeast in a small bowl with remaining 1/2 cup warm water until mixture is foamy, about 5 minutes.

  • Stir yeast mixture, mashed potato, 2 1/2 cups flour, sugar, melted butter, egg, and salt together in a large bowl until well combined.

  • Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead, 8 to 10 minutes, adding as much of the remaining 1/2 cup flour as necessary to form a smooth, elastic dough. Transfer the dough to large, buttered bowl, turning to coat with the butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

  • Punch dough down, then press it evenly in a buttered 9x13-inch baking pan. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until puffed, 30 to 45 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

  • Make indentations all over the top of the dough with your thumb and scatter the cold butter pieces over top. Stir brown sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl and sprinkle evenly over the dough.

  • Bake in the middle of the preheated oven until dark brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let the cake cool for 5 minutes and cut it into squares.

Cook's Note:

The dough may be made one day in advance and kept covered and chilled. Bring the dough to room temperature before continuing with the recipe.

Nutrition Facts

243 calories; protein 3.5g; carbohydrates 37.3g; fat 9.2g; cholesterol 34.5mg; sodium 228.4mg. Full Nutrition