Paul Hollywood's Chocolate Babka - The Great British Bake Off | The Great  British Bake Off

April Bakealong Challenge: Chocolate Babka

Welcome to April’s Bakealong Challenge, the Chocolate Babka!

Perhaps I should start off by saying that I had no idea what a babka was before I started this challenge. Yeah, how sad is that. But the fact of the matter is, I was no bread eater and the bakeries back home didn’t make babkas when I was growing up.  So the long and short of it is, this month’s Bakealong certainly posed a challenge for me. I was a bit out of sorts so I forgot a number of things during my first attempt to make a chocolate babka

First, when I was measuring the ingredients, I discovered that I ran out of yeast.  While I was contently rolling out the dough a few hours later, it suddenly occured to me that I had forgotten to make the filling.  I then had to drop what I was doing in order to attend to the filling.  And if those weren’t enough, I failed to rest the shaped dough in order to make it puffy. It also completely slipped my mind to remove the loaves from the oven in order to cover them with a foil.  So really, I had quite a list of mishaps on my first attempt.  There was a lot of room for improvement and I was determined to redeem myself.

The first batch of babkas weren’t that awful actually.  On the contrary, they were actually quite good. One of my co-workers even commented that the babka tasted similar to the ones that are sold in fancy bakeries here in Singapore.Paul Hollywood's Chocolate Babka - The Great British Bake Off | The Great British Bake Off

I wanted my second attempt to be completely foolproof.  I replenished my supply of yeast and flour. The recipe called for a lot of flour and a few tablespoons of yeast. I bought 2 big packets of instant yeast. The first one was just the “normal” type of yeast, while the other was a special one called “osmotolerant” yeast.  The latter kind is used in making doughs that have a high sugar content.  The King Arthur Flour recipe recommends using the special yeast (branded Gold label in their case). They also have an enlightening article that talks about yeast here.

I changed how the filling is made because just like what one commenter had said in the Bakealong forum, the filling was hard to spread once the butter has cooled down.  So instead of just melting the butter and mixing the sugar and cocoa powder in, I opted to melt the butter, chocolate chips and sugar first before whisking the cocoa powder in. It made for a smoother and more spreadable filling in my opinion.

The next thing I changed was the chocolate used in the filling. I found it too sweet since it used semisweet chocolate. (Although I guess skipping the espresso powder played a part as well.) So for the second attempt, I used bittersweet chocolate chips and a few drops of coffee extract.

The third thing that I changed was how the loaves were shaped. I wanted more obvious chocolate stripes. I found this really cool method on Google. One trick I learned was to roll out the dough thinly to get more layers.

Finally, I had to let go of the streusel. Nothing personal, I actually loved the crunchy texture but it completely distracted from the beautiful striations. If you do want to make the streusel, go ahead, it’s quite simple.

I put this challenge as a high medium. Don’t get me wrong, it was quite enjoyable and doing the spade work definitely paid dividends.

Shaping the Chocolate Babka takes practice but don’t worry if the filling is messy or the nuts fall off. Even the messiest shaped dough will churn out the tastiest babka.

Chocolate Babka

Chocolate Babka is April’s Bakealong challenge. This Chocolate Babka recipe delivers the ultimate sweet bread, complete with crunchy streusel on top.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Servings 4 servings
Calories 153 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 240 –300 ml 1–1/4 cups water
  • 2 eggs large
  • 750 grams 6 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 142 grams 10 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons instant yeast
  • 32 grams 1/3 cup powdered milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 110 grams 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

For the filling:

  • 57 grams 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 170 grams 1 cup semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 110 grams 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 28 grams 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 113 grams 1 cup pecans, finely chopped

For the glaze:

  • 1 egg large, beaten with a pinch of salt

For the streusel:

  • 57 grams 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 74 grams 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 60 grams 1/2 cup all purpose flour

Instructions
 

  • Combine all the ingredients for the dough in a bowl and mix until moistened. Cover with plastic wrap and rest for 20 minutes.Note: Use 240 ml (1 cup) of water first. Add water as necessary until the dough comes together.
  • Knead the dough until smooth. Transfer to a greased bowl and cover. Let the dough rest for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until quite puffy.
  • For the filling: In a saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and chocolate. Add the sugar and cook until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and whisk cocoa powder and cinnamon until combined. Stir in the espresso powder or coffee extract. Set aside.Note: In the original recipe, it calls for mixing the sugar, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and espresso powder together. The melted butter is then added to the mixture.
  • Deflate the dough and divide in half. Shape each half of the dough into a ball and roll into a rectangle, about 9″ x 18″ and 1/4″ thick.
  • Spread the butter-chocolate filling over the surface, leaving an inch around each edge. Sprinkle half of the nuts as well.Note: In the original recipe, since the chocolate chips are not melted with the butter, these are sprinkled on top along with the nuts.
  • Starting with the short edge, roll the dough into a log, tucking the ends to seal. Using a sharp knife or scissors, cut the dough in half lengthwise. Turn the cut dough such that the filling is exposed. Take both half pieces (filling side up), and gently twist them into a braid. Pinch the ends to seal and place into a lightly greased 9″ x 5″ loaf pan. Repeat for the other half of the dough.Note: To twist into a wreath, I used a tube pan instead. Once the dough has been braided, carefully transfer to the tube pan and arrange into a circle. Pinch the ends to seal.
  • FOR THE STREUSEL: Mix all the ingredients until crumbly.
  • Brush egg glaze over the tops of the dough. Sprinkle with streusel (if using). Cover with plastic wrap and let the shaped dough rise for 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours, until very puffy. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 300F/150C towards the end of the rising period.
  • Brush egg glaze over the tops of the dough. Sprinkle with streusel (if using). Cover with plastic wrap and let the shaped dough rise for 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours, until very puffy. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 300F/150C towards the end of the rising period.
  • Brush egg glaze over the tops of the dough. Sprinkle with streusel (if using). Cover with plastic wrap and let the shaped dough rise for 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours, until very puffy. Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 300F/150C towards the end of the rising period.

Video

Notes

When making Chocolate Babka, a few steps will go a long way. First, prepare the dough. Yeast is a basic baking ingredient. Then, add eggs, sugar, butter, and chocolate. Stir until smooth. Refrigerate for at least 20 minutes, then divide the dough into two equal parts. Once chilled, cut into triangles with a sharp knife. Once cooled, place the pieces on a wire rack to cool.

Chocolate Babka With Chocolate Swirls

Best Ever Chocolate Babka - SugarLoveSpices

Sweet yeast bread

You can make a sweet yeast bread for chocolate Babka in a few simple steps. First, you’ll need a yeast dough. Roll it out and cut it lengthwise. Starting at the top, braid the dough, then cut the resulting log in half. Then, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to rise. After about an hour, the dough should have doubled in size and be puffy.

Once doubled, cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let the babka rise at room temperature for 90 minutes before baking. It should be golden brown on top and an instant thermometer will read 190 degrees F. Meanwhile, make the syrup: Place sugar and water in a small saucepan. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Set the syrup aside while the babka bakes. Then, remove the babka from the oven.

Swirls of chocolate

My Mother's Ultimate Chocolate Babka | The Nosher

Swirls of chocolate are a great way to add a little something extra to your Babka. Chocolate is a common flavor in Babka, so why not make yours a little more decadent with chocolate swirls? There are many ways to create chocolate swirls, but this one is especially fun. I hope you enjoy this recipe! If you’re a chocolate lover, try this twist on your Babka!

For an extra decadent twist, try double the amount of chocolate. It’s a good idea to make more chocolate filling than you plan on using. This will make the filling more pronounced and provide a glossy finish. The babka will be best eaten the day it is baked, but it can be reheated for 10-15 seconds in the microwave. You can also try substituting whole wheat flour for all purpose.

Eggs

If you’ve never had chocolate babka before, you may be wondering what the heck is in them. To start with, chocolate babka is a sweet cake with a filling made from chocolate chips. There are two ways to make the filling – one way is to use chocolate chips and another way is to use vegan butter. Either way, you’ll want to make the filling a little bit sweeter than usual. Either way, the final product is something you’ll be happy to eat.

Chocolate babka is one of the most famous Jewish desserts, and it is made with eggs and butter. The result is a luscious, fluffy cake that’s ideal for brunch, afternoon tea, or dessert. This sweet treat originated in Eastern Europe, and was brought to the New World by Eastern European Jews. Here are some ways to make chocolate babka. All three ways are delicious and easy to make!

Butter

The filling is the secret to the delicious chocolate swirl in this traditional Polish dessert. Instead of using chocolate chips, you can use baking chocolate, which has a lower cocoa butter content than semi-sweet chocolate. Whether you like dark or semi-sweet chocolate, both work well. To add more flavor, you can also try cinnamon, which is commonly used in babka. Once the dough is mixed together, fold in the chocolate and sprinkle with additional cinnamon.

Roll the dough into rectangles about 30×40 cm. Spread half the chocolate filling on each rectangle. Roll the dough tightly into a log. Then, cut the dough in half lengthwise. Place each log in a lined loaf pan. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel and let it rest for about an hour or two. Once the babka has risen, you can divide it into two. Then, bake it for about 25 minutes.

Nutella

If you are looking for a new dessert to make, try Nutella in Chocolate Babka! This rich and decadent dessert is easy to make, and is the perfect treat for any chocolate lover. While this recipe may seem messy, it is worth it for the delicious taste and deliciously moist texture! Make sure to refrigerate the dough overnight before using it. To make the babka, start by placing half of the dough on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Next, roll it out into a rectangle about 10″x18″ and about 1/8″ thick. You may need to use a rolling pin to make this happen, and this may take a while. After the dough has rested, you can cut it into 2 long rectangles and place each half in the prepared loaf pans.

Once the dough is rested overnight, you can begin the Nutella process. Almost all recipes fail to mention that the dough should be cold before shaping. If you do not want to use sugar syrup, you can omit the sugar syrup altogether. The dough should be cold enough to be easily shaped. The dough should also be completely cold before rolling it out. This is crucial to avoiding messy shaping. It is also best to chill the dough before cutting it into pieces.

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