Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter Bread

So what exactly is Easter bread?  It is a braided bread, incorporating eggs within the braids.  Easter bread as a tradition is usually made forming a ring.  Eggs are usually dyed using festive holiday colors.  Similar to Challah bread, Easter bread is fluffy and rich.  As a symbol of the blood of Christ and His rebirth, the eggs are colored red.  In the U.S. eggs are often colored using pastel colors.  The leftovers make great french toast or simply just smoother with jam.

3 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 tsp (1 package) active dry yeast
2/3 cup milk, warm, 110F (low fat is fine)
2 eggs, room temperature
2 tbsp butter, very soft
3 raw eggs, dyed (as above) if desired
1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 tbsp water (for egg wash)


  • In an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook or in a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, sugar, salt, yeast and milk and mix to combine. Beat in eggs, one at a time, making sure that the first one is well incorporated before you add the second. Add butter, but into small pieces, and beat until completely absorbed. Add remaining flour 1 tbsp at a time, until the dough pulls easily away from the side of the bowl.
  • Knead dough lightly for about 3 minutes on a lightly floured surface until it is very elastic, then place in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 2 hours, until doubled in size.
  • Gently deflate dough into a rectangle and divide it, lenthwise, into three equal pieces. Roll out until pieces are about 16-inches long. Braid together, tucking the ends underneath the loaf. Place on a greased baking sheet (I used a silpat) and cover with a clean dishtowel. Let rise for 60 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Place three raw, dyed eggs gently into dough and brush the loaf with the egg wash.
  • Bake for 36-40 minutes, until rich golden brown.
  • Cool completely on a wire rack before serving.
  • Makes 1 loaf.

No comments:

Post a Comment