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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.