My Dear Wonderful Readers!
Here’s a secret!!..If there is some thing I love more than ‘baking cake’, it is ‘making bread’. The reason i used the term “Making” and not “Baking” is cause, I think, bread-making is art! Bread is like a little pill you take when you want to think. Bread-making is like meditation, only your eyes are open and you might have to put your elbow into it to make it better. Some times when my husband has a rough day at work, I give him the bread dough to go crazy on, and trust me the bread some how rises better and has better texture! haha.. When my little peach is also having a bad tantrum day, I find putting him to sleep and making bread is like having a glass of wine mid day. So I have been in search of a different kind of bread recipe for a while now and I came across this one. ‘Povitica’, This is one amazingly sweet, nutty, chocolatey bread roll.
When I first decided to make this bread, I was sure that it was like the Babka or the pesto roll but as I went over and over the recipe I realised that this bread need much more tender loving care (TLC) Maybe I will call it the TLC Bread.
It does seem like a quite a long process and half way through you might want to ‘not make it’, but just push your self and go all the way cause you have GOT TO TRY IT! We have been on a no refined sugar diet for a few weeks now, but I made an exception and used some of it in this recipe. The plan was to gift it to a friend but now maybe I will keep half of it and then “think” about giving the other half to some one else. Yes, it is really that good. But remember this is not a croissant or pastry. This is bread with chocolate.
This bread is essentially a Croatian dessert bread. Originally made on festivals and holidays this bread gains its popularity from the sweetness of sugar and chocolate mixed with finely ground nuts, rolled into thinly rolled sweet bread dough. Nowadays these breads are made in various flavours using fruits and fruit preserves. The traditional recipe uses walnuts in the roll, but I used equal portions of almonds and pistachio in mine. Do give this bread a try, I am sure you will not be disappointed.
The original recipe calls for wall nuts in the filling, but I decided to make mine with almonds and pistachio. Also the drizzle can be make with just plain sugar, butter and egg but I used chocolate cause I loooooovve chocolate!
For the Dough :-
- Bread Flour – 2 cups
- Sugar – 10tsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Milk – 2/3 cup
- Yeast – 3 tsp
- Egg – 1
- Vanilla Extract – 1tbsp
- In a bowl of your stand mixer, add flour, sugar, yeast and salt
- In another bowl combine egg, vanilla extract and milk. Give it a light beating
- With the speed turned on low, give the dry ingredients a gentle mix
- Now crank the speed up to medium and slowly add in the wet ingredients
- Slowly pour in the wet mixture into the dry in a steady stream ( I took around a min and a half)
- After pouring out all the wet ingredients, let mixture run for 7 – 8 mins on medium to give it a nice kneed. Once you see the mixture coming together to form a ball, add the salt
- When the dough is in the mixer, lightly grease a glass bowl with some olive oil and set aside
- After 8 mins tip the dough into the glass bowl. Do not try to handle it with your hand cause is is way too sticky
- Cover with cling wrap and let the dough rest for an hour or till the dough is twice its original size
- While the dough is resting proceed to making the filling
Ingredients for the Filling
- Almonds – 1/2 Cup
- Pistachio – 1/2 Cup
- Unsweetened Coco Powder – 3 tbsp
- Powdered Sugar – 1 cup
- Vanilla Extract – 1 tbsp
- Butter – 1/2 cup
- Milk – 4 tbsp (more if required while using filling)
- Egg – 1 yolk ( do not discard the white)
- In a sauce pan add butter and milk. Heat till the butter melts
- Mean while powder the almonds and pistachio to a fine mud like consistency
- Then take the milk and butter mixture off the heat and add the almond and pistachio mix
- Finally add the rest of the ingredients and whisk well to combine all ingredients
- Set aside to cool down
Assembling the bread
- Once the bread has risen well, spread a clean sheet over your work table ( I used my dining table and I used a lightly printed sheet to help me figure out how think I rolled out the dough)
- Now flour the surface of the bedsheets and slowly roll out the dough in a rectangular shape
- Roll out the dough as thin as your can. You should be able to see the sheet behind the dough. The thiner the rolled out dough, the more circles you will find in the final bread. The more, the prettier!
- After rolling it out, slowly spoon the chocolate nut mixture that was made earlier
- You might find that the mixture has thickened, just add a tsp of milk and whisk well
- While spreading the filling, take care not to tear the dough. This part is a little tricky, but once you start spreading the mixture you will get a feel of how much pressure you really need to put on the dough
- Once you have finished spreading the mixture, slowly flour your hands and roll the dough inwards from the longer side of the rectangle. This will give you a nice long chocolate roll
- Slowly pinch the sides of the dough to make is stick
- Liberally grease your bread pan handset besides the chocolate roll
- Now gentle lift one end of the roll and slowly set it within the pan and when you get to the end of the pan, turn it back to for a U and place over the chocolate roll in the pan. Do this till the entire roll is inside the pan
- Cover the bread pan with cling wrap and set in a warm place for another hour or till it rises to its double again
- Pre heat your oven to 180 C and using a pastry brush, coat the dough with the egg white
- Once the dough is ready, pop it into the oven for 15 mins
- Then reduce the temperature to 150 C and bake for 45 – 50 mins
- Once done, set aside to cool on a wire rack
- Drizzle some chocolate sauce over the top and you are all set serve