Celebration Bread, Braids & Burns

‘Twas a busy bread baking class this day. Non-stop, go, go, go and I have a burn to show for it.

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Today we had three recipes to work on. The first was raisin bread. Big dough mound. Because of the high ratio of yeast, it was proofing like crazy.

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We divided into four and into the loaf pans to proof some more.

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Meanwhile, the next bread recipe was for an Easter bread. This one had raisins as well as candied citrus peel. Now, this is a “celebration” bread, a special occasion bread. It is full of eggs, and fillings and prettied up with the braids.

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While those proofed, we worked on our last batch of bread – Monkey bread. Why is it called Monkey bread? It’s so sweet and tasty that once it is baked, as soon as it comes out of the oven, people attack it like crazy monkeys. Well, we’ll see…

The dough for monkey bread is very wet and it took some time to knead it to clean up stage. It is full of spices like cinnamon, ginger, cloves and mace. Once the dough was ready and had proofed, it was divided up into 64 pieces. These pieces were rolled into small balls and then dipped into melted butter. After being dipped in the butter, the balls were rolled in brown sugar and then placed in a round baking pan. A Bundt pan is the best pan to use for Monkey bread. It gives it a great shape once baked.

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My final products…

Raisin Bread

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20121125-224342.jpg Cinnamon and raisins, a great combo. This bread would also work well in French toast or bread pudding.

Monkey Bread

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I can see why people would tear into this like monkeys. The sugar caramelized and contrasted nicely against the ginger bread taste of the dough. There was a nice crust on the outside and it was super soft on the inside. A terrific breakfast bread for say, Christmas morning.

Easter Bread

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Gorgeous yes? I absolutely loved my braid decoration and how perfectly round the loaves stayed. The citrus peel works so well in this bread. And really, anything goes with this dough, chocolate chips, dried cranberries or blueberries too.

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With the holiday season ahead, any of these breads would work well for quick breakfasts, tasty snacks or even gift giving! =)

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4 thoughts on “Celebration Bread, Braids & Burns

  1. petit4chocolatier says:

    Everything looks delicious! I shy away from bread. Yours all look perfect. Especially the Easter bread; yummy! Love the braid!!!

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