Zorra at the great “Kochtopf” is organizing the 3rd World Bread Day, that takes place on October today. Everybody is invited to take part in this event, just few more hours to go , so if you want to post a bread recipe do be fast.
From the time I saw this bread in Gocbep place I fell in love with it. She was kind enoug to trnaslate the recipe. If you want to make this celbration bread, you will find it here.
I used a mixed of dried fruits and walnuts. Didn't had orange essence, so used Vanilla essence.
I was surprised how easy it was to make them.
I gave half of tge bread to my inlaws and they were full of praise for the bread, saying in the bakers you can't get such good quality. So that is good isn't it :-))
3 cups unbleached bread flour
3 tbsp granulated sugar
3/4 tsp salt
3 1/2 tsp instant yeast
1 1/2 tbsp orange or lemon extract
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup buttermilk or any kind of milk, at room temperature
1/4 ~1/2 cup water
1 1/2 cups dried sweetened cranberries
3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or any other nuts
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted1 egg, whisked until frothy, for egg wash
1) Heat 1/4 cup water to 105°F~115°F (Do not exceed 115° or the yeast will die). Sprinkle active dry yeast on the surface of warm water in a large mixing bowl ( or in the bowl of an electric mixer). Let stand until the yeast is dissolved, about 5 minutes. You will see a froth form on the top it, and you can also smell the yeast.
2) In a separate bowl, stir together flour, sugar, salt.
3) Gradually stir (or mix on low speed with the paddle attachment) flour mixture into the yeast bowl. Add the orange extract, eggs, buttermilk, and butter. Adding the remaining water, if needed, to make a soft, pliable ball of dough.
4) Sprinkle flour on the counter and transfer the dough to the counter. Knead (or mix on medium speed with the dough hook) for about 5 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and only slightly tacky, but not sticky. It should have a soft, pliable quality, not stiff and resistant. If it is too stiff, knead (or mix) in small amount of water until it softens; if the dough seems too sticky, sprinkle in small amounts of flour as needed.
Kneading yeast dough by hand: On a floured counter, fold the dough over toward you, then press it away from you with the floured heel of your hand, then give it a quarter turn, fold it, and press away again.
To test, slowly and gently stretch a small piece of dough, turning it in a a circular motion as you pull so that it stretches evenly. The dough should hole together without tearing until it forms a sheer membrane, thin enough to let light come through.
5) Add the dried cranberries and knead (or mix) for another 2 minutes, or until they are evenly distributed. Then gently knead (or mix) in the walnut pieces until they are evenly distributed. Lightly oil a large bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling it to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.
6) Ferment at room temperature for about 2 hours, or until the dough doubles in size. Punch down the dough for degas, fold the edges of dough to the center.
7) Transfer the dough to the counter and divide it into 6 equal pieces for 2 loaves. Roll out each pieces into strands about 9 inches long, thicker in the middle and slightly tapered toward the ends. Place 3 strands side by side and braid as you would hair. Pinch together the tips at both ends to seal the finish loaf. Place braid on a sheet pan lined baking parchment or greased. Continuing with remaining 3 strands.
Or for a celebration bread, you can divide dough into 6 pieces, 3 pieces of 10 oz each and 3 pieces of 4 oz each. Roll out each pieces into 3 equal long strands and 3 equal shorter strands. Braid it as you would hair to make 1 large braid and 1 smaller. Place the large braid on the pan, then lay the smaller braid on top, gently pressing the smaller braid onto the larger to adhere.
8) Brush the loaves with the egg wash and refrigerate the remaining egg wash to be used later. Mist the loaves with spray oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap.
9) Proof at room temperature for about 90 minutes, or until the dough nearly doubles in size. Brush the loaf a second time with the remaining egg wash.
10) Preheat the oven to 325°F with the oven rack on the middle shelf.
11) Bake for approximately 25 minutes. Rotate the pan 180 degrees for even baking and then continue baking for another 20~25 minutes, or until the loaf is deep golden brown, feel very firm, and sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. The internal temperature at the center of the loaf should register between 185~190°F.
12) Remove the bread from the pan and transfer it to a cooling rack. Allow the bread to cool for at least 1 hour before slicing or serving.