- 1 Tbs active dry yeast
- ½ cup sugar
- Zest of 1 medium lemon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 ½ cups cake flour
- 1 ½ cups bread flour
- 1 cup milk (I use lowfat)
- ¼ cup cream
- ¼ cup water
- 5 Tbs olive oil
- 2 teaspoons pure almond extract
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- ¼ cup coarse raw sugar
- ¼ cup whole almonds
- ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
- 1 egg + 1 Tbs water, glaze
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (or large bowl if you’re kneading by hand), mix 2 cups cake flour, yeast and lemon zest.
- Heat together milk, cream, water and oil to lukewarm (120ºF). Add it to the yeast mixture together with the eggs, mix with a wooden spoon a bit, and add salt, almond and vanilla extract. Mix well until creamy, about 1 minute.
- Attach to the stand mixer fitted with the dough hook and start adding the rest of the flours, ½ cup at a time. Knead for 4 or 5 minutes, adding a few extra tablespoons if needed because the dough is wet. The dough will leave the sides of the bowl for the first minute when you add flour, but it won’t completely gather into a ball. That is fine.
- If making by hand, mix with a wooden spoon while you add the remaining flour, until it’s very thick. Then dump the dough into a lightly floured counter, and knead by hand for no less than 5 minutes, adding extra flour by tablespoons to make a
- slightly sticky dough.
- Transfer the dough to a greased bowl, cover with plastic and let rise until doubled, about 1 ½ to 2 hours depending on the
- temperature of the room.
- On a lightly floured counter, flatten the dough into a rectangle, and cut it into three ropes.
- Pinch 3 ends together, and braid it. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect.
- Transfer to a parchment paper lined or greased baking sheet, and pin the two ends together to make a ring. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise until almost doubled, about 40 minutes.
- Preheat the oven 20 minutes before baking to 350ºF
- While the bread is rising for the last time, in a processor (I use the small one) mix sugar, whole almonds and cinnamon until it’s coarsely ground. Transfer to a bowl and mix in the sliced almonds.
- When ready to bake, mix the egg with a tablespoon of water, and brush generously but carefully the top of the dough. Sprinkle with the almond mixture.
- Bake for 30 minutes, turn down the oven to 325º and bake 10 more minutes, until golden and crunchy.
- Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Or eat warm.
adapted from Bread For All Seasons, by Beth Hensperger
Our wonderful list of holiday recipes:
- Cinnamon Pull-Apart Coffee Cake by Liz at That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Cranberry Apple Cinnamon Rolls by Dionne at Try Anything Once Culinary
- Cranberry Orange Scones by Renee at Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Crunchy Almond Holiday Bread by Paula at Vintage Kitchen Notes
- Holiday Breakfast Wreath by Lora at Cake Duchess
- Mini Toffee Banana Bread with Caramel Sauce by Holly at A Baker’s House
- Nut Brittle Topped Holiday Bread by Deepti at Baking Yummies
- Pandoro by Karen at Karen’s Kitchen Stories
- Stollen by Renee at Magnolia Days
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baked to the Twelve Loaves theme.
December, 2013, and posted on your blog by December 31, 2013.