I like finding uses for mincemeat other than the traditional mince pie, last year I made cinnamon buns with it and really enjoyed it, so this year I decided to do it again but this time I made a challah loaf. I added some saffron and a cinnamon stick in the pan while I warmed the milk and left the strands of saffron in and added it into the dough. it was so full of flavour from the orange zest and mince meat, it tasted really festive. I had it just as it was and also the next day I added a slice under the grill and toasted it and spread on some butter and it was sooo good, prefect for Christmas morning. I was really impressed with my braiding skills but I have no idea how I did it, I kind of winged it. if you need help then watch videos on you tube on how to braid a four strand loaf. this one looks easy to follow.
- 250ml milk
- 4 eggs
- 3 1/2 cups strong white flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 sachet of fast action yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- pinch of saffron
- one cinnamon stick
in a pan add the milk, saffron, and cinnamon and gently heat for 2 minutes (you don’t want to boil it) remove from the heat and let cool a bit. in a jug add the eggs and beat, there will be about 150ml of egg mixure. once the milk has cooled enough pour in the milk a bit at a time and stir you should get about 300ml of liquid. in a bowl of a stand mixer add the flour, sugar, yeast and salt (on the opposite side of the bowl to the yeast) then pour 3/4 of the liquid and mix then mix with the dough hook, add more liquid if needed until the dough comes together and knead for 5 minutes. place in a oiled bowl and cover and leave to rise for 1 hour.
knock out the air and roll into a large rectangle that is a long as possible and cut in half so you have two long strips then spoon the mince meat in a line in the middle of each strip and grate on some orange zest and roll up into two long ropes. then fold the two together so you have four strands and plait together. leave to rise again for 1 hour. the preheat the oven to 180c brush with a beaten egg and bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the base sounds hollow when tapped.
dust with some icing sugar.