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Easter Plaited Bread

Easter Wreath bread

This is a old Thermomix recipe that I altered to make even better. Its in the style of a Brioche bread. Some would call it Challah bread, but thats not technically correct as we include butter in this recipe. Oh, and I’ve also added the conventional method, so there is no excuses 🙂

It looks like a long and complicated recipe but it’s not.  It’s just because I’ve added all my tips along the way. They do make things easier.

Classes if you are local (Melbourne) or Zooms from anywhere 🙂

You can make it with or without the filling, and it can be for Easter or any time of year. This recipe is an enriched dough, meaning it has added fats (in this case with egg and butter) but its not quite as enriched as a proper French Brioche dough where they add so much more butter. Think of it as a “light” Brioche bread.

An almond and cherry filled bread plait on a wooden board.
Loaf

This recipe will make one large loaf or two smaller ones as I have. My method below explains the two shapes and how to fill them, so you may have fun learning a new technique?

Easter Wreath bread

Easter Plaited Bread

4.80 from 5 votes

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becs-table.com.au
A beautiful, enriched dough, soft, light and a little sweet. Call it light Brioche, as this one doesn't have quite as much butter as a proper French Brioche. 😉
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Difficulty Medium
Course Afternoon Tea, Bread, Easter, Morning Tea
Cuisine German
Servings 8
Method Thermomix and Conventional

Equipment

  • 1 Thermomix (optional)

Ingredients
  

For the dough

  • 30 g Sugar
  • 330 g milk
  • 7 g dry yeast 2 tsp
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 80 g butter
  • 50 g Sugar Yes, there are two amounts just put it in. It’s much nicer for a sweet bun.
  • 650 g baker’s flour
  • 1 egg

For the filling

  • 150 g Blanched almonds
  • 70 g Brown sugar
  • 70 g butter
  • Pinch salt
  • 20 g currents
  • 50 g Dried Cherries chopped
  • 1 tsp almond extract

Instructions
 

  • First of all, I like to make a proving a proofing chamber. If you have a Thermoserver follow these simple steps, otherwise you need to make a nice, warm spot for your dough to rise)
  • Boil your jug. Once done, fill a Thermoserver up to at least ½ full with the boiling water. Pop the lid on to keep the heat in and set aside. (This is a quick easy way to make a proving chamber. We talk about many ways you can do this in my bread making classes)

Thermomix Method:

  • Add 30 g of sugar to your TM bowl along with the yeast and milk then set for 5 mins/37°c/speed 1. (Try not to get the yeast on the top of the blades. It won’t start to do its job up there. ?)
  • Add the remainder of your dough ingredients and mix on for 10 seconds/speed 7 to combine.
  • Now set the dial to closed lid position and knead for 3 minutes on Interval speed.
  • When the TM has finished kneading, remove the hot water from your Thermoserver. Please be careful it’s still very hot. Wipe the surface dry and smear a little oil to prevent the dough from sticking, add the dough and replace the lid. Leave for 30 mins.

For the Filling:

  • In the meantime you can make your filling. Add the almonds and brown sugar to the TM bowl and blitz 10 seconds/speed 10.
  • Add the butter and give it another blitz on 10 seconds/speed 6
  • Add the currents and cherries and set for 5 seconds/on reverse speed + 2
  • Once the 30 minutes proving time is up, remove the dough from the Thermoserver and divide it into two, to make two separate loaves or just make one you're the boss. ???
  • Take the first piece and cut it into 3 equal parts. Using a rolling pin, roll each portion into long flat rectangles. I did this one piece at a time to save room on the bench.
    4 pices of dough
  • Spread each strip with a little bit of filling, (down the centre of each strip), then roll it keeping the filling inside. Repeat this process until you've filled and shaped all three sausages.
    3 dough sausages ready to plait
  • Now you need to plait the sausages. On a baking mat or baking paper, start by pinching the three sausages together at the top end. Plait to make the whole thing neat and tidy tuck the two ends underneath. Set aside under a cloth to prove.
    plaited bread on a tray

For the second shape:

  • Now for the second piece of dough. Roll this one out into a very long flat rectangle using a rolling pin. Spread the remainder of the ingredients and fold and roll up into a long sausage.
    very long flat strip of dough
  • Make a ring with the sausage tucking one end into the other to close the ring.
  • Using a pair of scissors cut into the dough at regular intervals all the way around the ring leaving the inner ring intact. Just like in the picture.
    a bread wreath on a metal tray
  • Fold each second section inwards.
  • Brush both plait and ring with an egg wash and place into a cold oven and sprinkle with almonds, seeds, hail sugar whatever you wish. Set the temp to 180°c fan and bake until dark golden brown. Remove from the oven and set on cooling racks for at least 10 minutes. Then eat, eat, eat.
    decorated

Conventional Method:

  • Make a proving chamber somewhere warm. Like a plastic lidded bucket, suspended over a sink of hot water. Use your cake cooling rack to suspend. Or a hot water bottle can come in handy.
  • Warm your milk and sugar in a pot on the stove gently to 37°c remove then add your yeast stirring to combine. Set this aside with a lid on to ferment for 5 mins.
  • In the meantime add the remainder of your dough ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix to combine. Rub the butter in with your fingers then make a well in the centre ready for the warmed milk/yeast.
  • Pour the milk/yeast mix with your dough ingredients and gently mix through till combined.
  • Bring the dough together. This dough should be very soft, so kneading by hand isn’t easily done here unless you know the French kneading method. Please, Don’t add any more flour. Soft, sticky dough gives you light soft bread. You don't have to knead this bread, but if you have a stand mixer with a dough hook, your bread will have a stronger bread-like texture. Your dough will still be fine if you mix it by hand, although the crumb texture will be a little more like cake.
  • Leave to prove in a warm spot for 30 mins.

For the Filling:

  • In the meantime you can make your filling. Add the almonds and brown sugar to a food processor and blitz till the ingredients are turned to a flour like consistency.
  • Add the butter and give it another blitz turning it into a paste.
  • Add the currents and cherries and stir in to combine.
  • Once the 30 minutes proving time is up, remove the dough and cut it into two.
  • Take the first piece and cut it into 3 equal parts. using a rolling pin roll each portion into long flat rectangles.
    4 pices of dough
  • Spread with a little bit of filling, (down the centre of each strip) then roll it keeping the filling inside. Repeat this process until you've filled and shaped all three sausages.
    3 dough sausages ready to plait
  • Now you need to plait the sausages. On a baking mat or baking paper, start by pinching the three sausages together at the top end. Plait to make the whole thing neat and tidy tuck the two ends underneath. Set aside under a cloth to prove.
    plaited bread on a tray

For the second shape:

  • Now for the second piece of dough. Roll this one out into a very long flat rectangle using a rolling pin. Spread the remainder of the filling ingredients and roll up into a long sausage.
    very long flat strip of dough
  • Make a ring with the sausage tucking one end into the other to close the ring.
  • Using a pair of scissors cut into the dough at regular intervals all the way around the ring leaving the inner ring intact. Just like in the picture. Fold each second section inwards
    a bread wreath on a metal tray
  • Brush both plait and ring with an egg wash and place into a cold oven and sprinkle with almonds, seeds, hail sugar whatever you wish. Set the temp to 180°c fan and bake until dark golden brown. Remove from the oven and set on cooling racks for at least 10 minutes. Then eat, eat, eat.
    decorated

Video

YouTube video

Notes

I know the recipe looks long but it’s not difficult.  Give it a go, you won’t be disappointed.

Want to know more?

If bread is not your “super power” and doesnt work out quite they way you expect, then this blog post may be helpful.

What’s wrong with my bread?

2 Comments

  1. really nice recipe – just made them both, turned out exactly like the pics and instructions were perfect – thanks Bec!

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