Bake Club Babka

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Bake Club Babka

Makes 1 9-inch loaf

1 teaspoon (½ packet) dry active yeast

2 tablespoons warm water

½ cup whole milk, warmed

2 -2 ¼ cups flour

⅓ cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg 

5 tablespoons butter, softened

Chocolate Filling

6 ounces chocolate chips (1 cup)

4 tablespoons butter, 

2 tablespoons honey


Cinnamon Filling

3/4 cup light brown sugar

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon 

Pinch salt

  • Raisins if you want to be REAL classic classy

  1. Whisk together the yeast and warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer until yeast is dissolved and foamy. Whisk in milk.
  2. Engage the dough hook and add flour, sugar and salt over the top of the liquids and mix together on low speed. Add the egg and butter and continue mixing until the dough comes together as a thick, sticky mass. 
  3. Once a sticky mass, set your timer for 7 minutes, to knead the fully formed dough on low for maximum gluten development.
  4. Remove dough from bowl, grease bowl and place dough back, flipping it over to coat in grease. Leave the greased ball in the greased bowl seam side down, cover it with a kitchen towel, and set it in a draft-free spot (I like the microwave or a turned-off oven) to rise for an hour, or until it’s nearly doubled in size.
  5. While the dough is rising, make the filling of your choice by measuring all ingredients in a small bowl and gently melting in the microwave in 30 second spurts, stirring between blasts to ensure a consistent mixture exists. Set filling to the side at room temperature to solidify at a soft-ish state. 
  6. Grease a 9-inch loaf pan (line with parchment or create an aluminum strip to hangover thse side. Grab that proofed dough, punch it down, and on a clean surface, use a rolling pin to roll it into a 9x16-inch rectangle (as thin as possible for maximum striping). Spread the room temperature filling evenly over the surface leaving a small gap between it and the edge on 3 sides (not the 9-inch side closest to you), then roll the dough up into a big, tight tube, making sure to keep all the filling inside.
  7. Use a sharp knife, to slice the tube lengthways so you have two halves of the previous 9-inch tube and fold each half over one another 3 times, leaving the center exposed on top (the babka will start to look familiar now!). Transfer the braid into the greased pan and tuck the tails of the dough if needed. Cover with the same kitchen towel and place in the same draft-free spot to rest and rise again for an hour. 
  8. Heat the oven to 350°F. Bake the babka for 45 minutes or until you get a clean toothpick when inserted into the center. Cool completely at room temperature in the pan before using parchment or aluminum to help pop it out. Serve immediately or wrap well in plastic and slice, (toast?!) and serve for breakfast, afternoon snack or dessert.


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