Babka is a Jewish delicacy which became popular in eastern Europe. Babka is somewhere between a sweet bread and a cake. When I shifted to Germany last year, I many times, visited the bakeries here as Germany is famous for its bakeries and therefore there are many types of bread cakes and pastries available here. This delicacy is called Schokolade Hefezopf. Since I was not very familiar with the native language it was hard to figure out which bread to buy. Besides cakes and pastries, I also loved croissants and sweet rolls. Today I am sharing the recipe of one such sweet bread-cake hybrid recipe, Babka, and that too without eggs! The recipe is full proof and guarantees you a delicacy, which you would not be able to resist especially when your house will be filled with the sweet aroma of this bread.
Serves 7 – 8 persons
Preparation time: 30-40 mins
Fermentation time: 2 hours
Baking time: 20-25 mins
For the Dough:
- All-purpose flour: 3 cups + some flour for dusting
- Yeast: 2 tsp
- Butter: half Cup
- Sugar: 1/4th Cup
- Milk: One and 1/4th Cup (approx)
- Salt: 1/2 tsp
- Vanilla Essense: 1tsp
For the filling (Chocolate)
- Nutella or any Chocolate spread or home-made Chocolate ganache
- finely chopped sweet bitter dark chocolate (about 60%)
- In a bowl, take yeast and 2 tbsp sugar
- Add about 1/4th cup warm milk to it and stir it. Keep it aside for 10-15 mins
- When you see the liquid rising, you will understand the yeast is active now.
Preparing the dough
- In a large mixing bowl add All-purpose flour
- Add Sugar to it
- Add the activated yeast liquid, and start adding milk and make a medium soft dough.
- Now bring the dough on your work station and start adding butter to the dough gradually.
- Keep kneading it for at least 10-12 mins till you see the texture of the dough change.
- PS: if you have a stand mixer or a food processor with butter blade attachment or hand mixer your kneading time will be reduced to a few minutes.
Resting the dough
- After kneading the dough, it is time for the dough to rest.
- Keep the dough in a large container and cover it with a wet/damp muslin cloth or cling wrap. If you are using cling wrap make sure you prick it with toothpicks so that it is ventilated.
- Let it rest for two hours or till it is double in size as shown in the image above.
Technique to get the braids perfect!
- Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Take one piece of it and roll it into a flat roti.
- Trim the edges and try to make it rectangle in size, divide the rectangle into two vertical rectangles
- Spread Hezalnut spread or any other chocolate spread or Chocolate ganache on it.
- Sprinkle the chopped dark chocolate chunks on it. As the hazelnut spread is very sweet, the bitterness of dark chocolate will balance its sweetness.
- Roll the two halves vertically.
- Cut it from the center, again vertically
- This will create four parts of two rolls.
- Dividing the length of the rolled halves, cut it from the center as shown in the picture
It is a sugar syrup, traditionally known as Simple syrup owing to its method of preparation. While we keep the bread aside for proofing we can make this Simple Syrup. As the name says, this is a very simple to make. In a saucepan add 1/4th cup sugar and 1/4th cup water and bring it to boil. Add half teaspoon vanilla extract. Let it simmer for one or two mins and remove the saucepan from the flame. The Simple syrup is ready.
- Once the brailed bread is ready, let it rest for half an hour. After proofing give it milk wash and bake it for 15-20 mins on 180 oC or till they are golden brown
- & 3. Once out of the oven brush the buns with simple syrup
This delicacy is sure to win hearts of everyone, kids or adults or the kid which is inside each one of us. I promise, the sweet aroma of baking this delicacy will fill your your heart with happiness!! So do not miss trying this recipe at home and relish it!