Friday Faves – Delicious Dishings
Hope everyone has had a great week. I’m looking forward to the long weekend, but first, I want to introduce the next blogger being featured on Friday Favs. I met Megan from Delicious Dishings in the spring of 2010 at an Eggland’s Best event. Since then, we have become friends and I always look forward to catching up with Megan at various Boston area blogger events. Megan is the mastermind behind the awesome King Arthur Flour trip and we have recently started baking together. It’s awesome to be able to bake with someone who’s as passionate about it as I am! Megan’s blog features recipes as well as Boston area events and restaurant reviews. I’m always in awe of the goodies she bakes up and I’m jealous of the fact that she worked at Flour bakery for a while!
Hi, Beantown Baker readers! I’m Megan, and I blog over at Delicious Dishings. Like Jen, I live in the Boston area and love to bake! Even though I blog about more than just baked goods, since Jen and I are both really into baking, I thought it would be fun to share a recipe with you for chocolate babka.
The recipe actually comes from Boston.com and makes two luscious chocolate-filled loaves topped with cinnamon streusel. It’s beyond heavenly.
The best way to make the babka is to prepare it the night before, leaving the loaves to rest in the refrigerator overnight. Get up very early the next morning, and take them out of the fridge so they can sit out at room temperature for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours before you bake them. Your whole house will smell like cinnamon and chocolate for the entire day, and the babka will be fresh, warm, and ready to be eaten for a late breakfast.
3/4 cup whole milk, warmed slightly
1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
2 whole eggs plus 2 yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut up
Canola oil (for the bowl)
Filling (recipe below)
Streusel (recipe below)
Assembly ingredients (see below)
In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine the milk and 1 teaspoon sugar. Sprinkle the yeast on top. Set aside for 8 to 10 minutes or until foamy.
In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat the eggs and yolks, 1/2 cup sugar, and vanilla. Add the yeast mixture and 2 cups of flour, and mix on low speed to combine. Add the remaining 1 3/4 cups of flour and salt, and beat until combined.
Switch to the dough hook. With mixer running on medium speed, add the butter, a few pieces at a time, and mix for about 8 minutes or until the dough is silky-smooth and sticky.
Lightly oil a bowl, scrape the dough into it, and turn it to coat it with oil all over. Cover the bowl with a towel, and let it rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until almost doubled in bulk.
In food processor, combine 8 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used Scharffen Berger), and 1/3 cup sugar.
Process until chocolate is pebbly.
In a medium bowl, mix together 3/4 cup flour, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
Using a pastry blender, cut 5 tablespoons unsalted butter (diced) into the flour mixture until crumbly.
Use your hands to gather the mixture together into a mass and then break it into clumps.
Lightly oil two 9-by-5-inch metal loaf pans. (One of my pans was a little smaller, so I just divided my dough so one half was a little bigger.) Line each pan with parchment paper, so it comes 1 inch above the long sides. Lightly oil the paper.
Scrape the dough onto a floured counter, and use a bench scraper to divide it in half. Sprinkle one piece of dough with flour, and pat it into a 12-by-8-inch rectangle, with a long side parallel to you.
Brush the dough with half of the melted butter to within 1/2 inch of the long side farthest from you.
Sprinkle half of the filling over the dough, except for the top border.
Starting with the long side nearest you, roll up the dough like a jelly roll, and pinch the ends shut.
Starting at one end, gently twist the roll every 2 inches or so as if wringing out a towel. (Filling may leak out.)
Place the roll in a pan, pushing it toward the center slightly and curving the ends around to fit. Repeat with the remaining dough, butter, and filling.
Brush the tops and sides of the loaves with the egg glaze.
Sprinkle each loaf with streusel, letting any excess streusel fall into the pan.
Cover with plastic wrap.
Let the loaves rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or let them rest in the refrigerator overnight. (If you refrigerate them, make sure to let them stand at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours before baking.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake the babkas for 35 to 45 minutes or until they are golden brown and the bottoms sound hollow when tapped.
Transfer the pans to a rack to cool for 30 minutes. Lift the loaves out of the pans using the parchment overhangs, and set them on a wire rack. Let cool before cutting.
And then feel free to cut into this to reveal the beautiful, swirled inside, and take a taste. This yeast-risen bread/cake is perfect for breakfast or any time of day. The cinnamon streusel gives it a coffee cake feel, and the chocolate makes it decadent enough to be eaten for dessert.
Have you ever made or eaten a babka or something similar?
Be sure to check out all of my favorite bloggers as they are featured on Friday Favs!