Nearly a year has passed since our visit in Alsace in our summer vacation. One of the souvenirs I brought home after two splendid weeks in france was a clay baking form for Kougelhopf. It is sitting on my kitchen cabinet since then, waiting for me to create a recipe for Kugelhopf.
This weekend I finally found the time to study different Kougelhopf recipes. But I did not like them, all of them use a lot of yeast and give the dough no time to rest properly to develop a good flavour. And I wanted a recipe which uses a preferment for better taste and longer shelf life! And so I decided to use my own interpreation with a sweet starter which helps to rise the buttery dough without using a lot of yeast.
The cake is more time consuming then other recipes you may find in the web, but it develops a fine complex flavour and light and feathery crumb. I imaging that even my alsacian great-grandmother would have enjoyed it!
My Dearest like the crusty rolls from the bakery which have a very soft and fluffy crumb. Such a crumb can not be archived without the use of at least some lecithin in the dough. But I do not want to use isolated lecithin and so I decided to use natural sources. Egg yolk and butter milk have both a high content of lecithin and the butter milk adds a good flavour as well.
The dough is made in the evening and rise overnight in the fridge. The next morning the rolls only has to be formed and baked. In about one and a half hour you have delicious warm rolls for breakfast!
It’s berry season! After we spent the last weeks with cooking red currant, raspberry and strawberry jam we turned our attention to the blueberries. Beside of cooking jam I set some aside to use them for a little weekend treat. Together with some quark I baked quark blueberry pastries.
For the dough I used my sweet starter which was just freshly feed. But like for this Sonntagszopf you can use Lievito madre or a biga instead. What ever you choose as a preferment, it will be delicious!
Simone from the S-Küche asked us to bring “refresments” for the 100. Blogevent in the Kochtopf. And even me, who prefer sparkling water as summer refreshment, likes sometimes a refreshing change. But bought lemonades are never tempting, even the expensive organic orangeade is to sweet and intense for me. And so I decided to make my own orangeade.
In my version the border between spritzer and orangeade becomes blurred, because the orange syrup makes it only slightly sweet and is balanced from freshly pressed Orange and lime juice. For some colour in the glass I added pieces of the peel. I borrowed this idea from a restaurant we visit some time ago.
It is a refreshing drink at its sweetness can be easily adjusted to your personal taste by the amount of syrup used!
This year is a great year for berries. In my parents garden the red currants bushes bent down under the load of ripe berries. Two weeks ago I picked enough berries to cook enough red currant jelly for the coming year and it you could hardly see that I take any fruits. And so I picked another 2 kilogramm berries in betweeen two thunderstorms last Friday afternoon. The most of the currants are cleaned and froozen, the rest I used for baking a cake.
I found the recipe at Chili & Ciabatta, but due to the leftover in my baking drawer I changed the dough already a lot, adding grounded almonds and chocolate. And the for the vanilla creme I go for a different recipe because I do not use gelatine.
And even if the recipe is a different one in the end, the cake tastes fantastic. A sweet vanillacreme is balanced by the tarte red currants and with chocolate you can never do wronge!
I like to eat some “Zopf” (or Challah or some other kind of soft braided bread), especially for breakfast on sunday. In the last year I often baked Schwiss Butterbraid. I like it very much but for the most people who grow up in Germany this kind of bread has to be sweet while the swiss version is not sweet. And for those with a sweet tooth I baked this sunday braid. It is so delicious, that I baked it for the goodbye breakfast of a colleague again. And each time I bake it I’m thrilled because of its buttery, sweet flavour and the soft crumb.
A big portion of cream makes the crumb incredible soft and fluffy. And the advantage of cream instead of butter is that the dough (or the shaped bread) rise well in the fridge. With higher butter amounts I made the experience that the butter hardens in the cold and so hinder the dough to rise proberly. And for forming the dough ít is necessary to keep it in the fridge for at least one hour. But then braiding will be easy.
For a good flavour and good oven spring I included my sweet starter in the recipe. If you don’t have one, you can use instead some Lievito madre or a Biga, which rise overnight in the fridge.