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chocolate orange babka snowflake loaf

I love chocolate orange, especially at Christmas. I love getting a terrys chocolate orange and munching on the whole thing throughout the week (or in some cases in one evening and then I feel like crap ha ha). I really wanted to make a babka loaf, and I saw a chocolate orange one in a cook book I was flicking through and decided to use my orange chocolate to fill it, but rather than do a normal babka loaf I decided to make a snowflake. its actually really easy to shape and looks quite the part for the Christmas table. I added some fresh orange juice and zest into the dough and I added some extra orange zest in with the filling. It smelt so lovely when It was baking. because it is an enriched dough it browns quite quickly so I had to put some tin foil over it for the last 10 minutes of baking. I love making bread there is something so satisfying about waiting for it to rise then prove, its like a labour of love. this time of year my kitchen is so cold that its difficult to get my dough to rise out on the kitchen worktop, so I turn the oven on for 5 minutes then leave the door open so it cools right down for 10 minutes, then its like a DIY proving drawer to put the dough in.

dough recipe

  • 3 and half cups strong white flour
  • juice and zest from one orange
  • 3 eggs
  • 100ml milk
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 14g (2 sachet) fast action yeast
  • 1/3 cup caster sugar

filling

  • 150g terrys chocolate orange (or other orange flavoured chocolate)
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • zest of one navel orange
  • 3 tbsp. cocoa powder

make the dough

in the bowl of a stand mixer add the flour, sugar and yeast then put the salt on the opposite side of the bowl, add the orange juice, and eggs in a measuring jug then top up with milk until it gets to 300ml, then add it to the flour and add the zest. mix at high speed, adding a drop more milk if you need it until you have a manageable dough and knead for 5 minutes. oil a bowl and place the dough in it and cover and leave to rise for an hour or so until it has doubled in size. once risen tip it out onto a floured surface, knock the air out of the dough and cut into four balls. roll each ball out into flat circles. make the filling by adding all the ingredients in a bowl and placing in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time until the butter has melted then stir it to melt the chocolate (make this 10 minutes before you need it) place one of the dough circles on a lined baking sheet, then spread on some of the chocolate, then place the second piece on top and spread on some more chocolate, then add the third and add the last of the ganache then top it with the fourth piece. then cut the dough across four times like a pizza, see above photo. then cut in the middle of each triangle and stop before you reach the centre. take each piece and twist it in opposite directions then pinch the ends together and tuck ends under (see above photo). leave to prove for 1 hour. preheat the oven to 180c, brush with a beaten egg and bake for 35 minutes after 20 minutes cover with foil so it doesn’t burn.

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