Do you have that one treat that you have to make every year at Christmas? I have many, many cookies and candies that I like to make but only one bread that is a must…Chocolate Babka! I wish I could serve you a warm slice with a cup of coffee and enjoy conversation with you. Since that is not possible the next best thing is to share the recipe with you.
Chocolate Babka is a yeast bread that is swirled with a chocolate, sugar, and cinnamon filling. It is gooey and absolutely delicious! This recipe is a lighter spin on the original but you wouldn’t know it, it is laking nothing. I try hard to not eat the whole loaf in one day, it usually lasts three days and then it’s gone. Which means… it’s time to make another loaf!
I like to bake the bread up in small bread pans and give to my family and friends. Depending on the pan size you can get 3-4 small loaves. It makes a nice gift.
In the past I have made the dough in my bread maker. This time I made it using my stand mixer. Both ways produce a wonderful bread. So you choose which is best for you. No matter which way you make the dough you will be getting lots of compliments and everyone wanting more. Eat it for breakfast, snack, or dessert. It’s delicious paired with coffee or hot tea.
*** This recipe calls for both all-purpose flour and bread flour. You do not need to buy bread flour if you don’t have any on hand. Just substitute the bread flour for all-purpose flour, 1 to 1 ratio. So what is bread flour? Bread flour has a higher protein content and there is a slight difference in the crumb and texture of the baked bread. I have made this bread with bread flour and without. They both came out great. If you have it on hand use it but there is no need to spend money on it.
Delicious Chocolate Babka
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 2 1/4 tsp or 1 pkg yeast
- 3/4 cup 2 % milk (105°F to 110°F)
- 6 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 2/3 cup all purpose flour, divided
- 1 1/4 cups bread flour *** (see note above recipe)
- 5 Tbsp butter, softened
- cooking spray
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup chocolate chips, chopped
- STRUESEL TOPPING:
- 1 Tbsp butter, softened
- 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp powdered sugar
****If using a bread machine to make dough, combine all ingredients except cooking spray into your machine and follow manufacturers instructions. Once dough is done skip down to step 3.****
Dissolve 1 tsp. granulated sugar and yeast in warm milk in the bowl of a stand mixer, let stand for 5 minutes. Stir in 6 Tbsp. granulated sugar, vanilla, salt and egg yolk. Add in 1 1/3 cup all purpose flour and bread flour. Beat with the dough hook until blended. Add in butter, beating until well blended (dough will be very sticky). On a floured surface knead (about 10 min) until smooth and elastic adding in the remainder of all purpose flour 1 Tbsp at a time to prevent dough from sticking to hands. The dough will be soft but will not stick to your hands.
Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft free place until doubled in size (about 1 1/2 hr).
Coat a 9x5 loaf pan with cooking spray or line with parchment paper.
Prepare filling. Combine all ingredients, except chocolate chips, in a small bowl and set aside.
Place dough on a floured surface and roll into a 16-inch square. Sprinkle the filling evenly over the top leaving a 1/4 inch border around the edges. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the filling and roll up dough tightly. Pinch the ends to seal. Hold the dough and twist it 4 times like you are wringing out a towel. Put the dough into the prepared pan. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 45 min.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare streusel topping. Mix it together with a fork until crumbly and sprinkle evenly over dough. Bake for 40 minutes or until it sounds hollow when tapped. Cool bread in pan for 10 minutes and then remove from pan. Enjoy!
With each slice you have warm it in the microwave for about 20-25 seconds to melt the chocolate to ensure you get the gooey goodness each time.
What is the one treat you must make at Christmas to make your holiday complete? Let me know how it went for you.