Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf

No deep frying necessary, perfect for French Toast…
Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf - The Cardiff Cwtch - Brunch Ideas

When my husband (…and long suffering Guinea Pig) hears pots and pans bashing around in the kitchen or gets a whiff of something cooking he’ll suddenly appear behind me, peering over my shoulder with a look of terrified curiosity as he asks, “Oh God, what are you making now..?” He hasn’t trusted me in the kitchen since the Slow Cooker Chilli Chocolate Chicken incident ten years ago – the memory of which still has us crying tears of laughter (…although at the time the tears had a lot more to do with the 200g of bird eye chilli peppers I chucked in – seeds and all). Nowadays when I tell him what I’m up to he’s more likely to hum and ask when it’s going to be ready than reel in horror, but I still get the odd raised eyebrow and the occasional “YOU’RE FILTH” when I come at him with something excessively gluttonous (like Cream Egg-filled Doughnuts for example…).

To be honest, those are the recipes I get really excited about because they either turn out to be absolutely banging or disastrously bonkers (but a blast to mess around with either way) – and as soon as I decided that I fancied creating a Jam Doughnut-flavoured loaf of bread that would be just perfect for French Toast, I knew it was going to be one of those make it or break it days in the kitchen.

Thankfully, it was a make it day; the loaf came out perfectly and – even better – made my house smell of jam doughnuts. The enriched dough turned out a soft, pillowy loaf (a lot like brioche, but not quite as buttery) with that well-loved sugary, cinnamon seaside doughnut flavour, marbled with slightly sour and sticky raspberry jam. Delicious either warm from the oven with a bit of butter, or toasted for a bit of crunch – it was even better a few days later when it was slightly on the stale side and made some pretty epic French Toast. Filthy, but fabulous. 😉

Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf - The Cardiff Cwtch - Welsh Bloggers

Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf

Ingredients
  • 150ml warm milk
  • 2 tsp dried active yeast
  • 4 tbsp caster sugar
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 50g cooled melted butter
  • pinch of salt
  • 300g plain flour
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 340g seedless raspberry jam
Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf - The Cardiff Cwtch - Welsh Food Bloggers
Method
  1. In a small bowl, stir together the warm milk, caster sugar and yeast – leaving it for ten minutes for the yeast to activate (you’ll know it’s worked if you get either a foamy surface or can see tiny, pinprick bubbles forming – if not, your milk was either too hot or too cold and you’ll need to start again).
  2. Pour your beaten eggs and cool, melted butter into a large bowl – then add the yeast mixture. Sift in the flour, salt and ground cinnamon, then stir to create a sticky, wet dough.
  3. If you’ve got a bread maker, go ahead and use your dough setting to take the hard work of kneading out – if not, pour the dough onto a floured surface and knead for ten minutes until soft and pliable (it’ll be a sticky, messy affair from start to finish – but persevere and you’ll be rewarded in the end! 🙂 ). Pop the kneaded dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and then leave to prove somewhere warm for an hour.
  4. Once the dough has proved, knock it back and then roll it out into about a 2cm thick rectangle. Spread the surface generously with raspberry jam, then tightly roll it along the long edge (like a Swiss Roll).
  5. Line a 1lb loaf tin with baking paper, then roughly twist your roll of dough and pop it in the tin (tucking the ends underneath – bit like a Babka). Leave to prove somewhere warm for another hour.
  6. Glaze the surface of the loaf with a little milk (or a beaten egg for a glossy, golden finish), then bake for 35 minutes at 180°C.
  7. Serve fresh and warm from the oven with butter, or for breakfast as French Toast. 🙂 (Check out my favourite French Toast Recipes here)
Jam Doughnut Brioche Loaf - The Cardiff Cwtch - Jam Doughnut French Toast

Have a lovely week!

Orange and Nutella Babka

Hands up then, who’s planning on putting their tree up this weekend?  I’ve got Sunday set aside purely for de-tangling fairy lights, rummaging through our decorations (Sunny and I collect decorations from all the places we’ve travelled to) and then hoovering up pine needles.  I can’t wait!  But hey, it’s a knackering job innit?  There’s nothing better than crashing onto the sofa afterwards with a hot cup of tea and something sweet!  Well, I’ve got the perfect Christmas Decorating Fuel for you; this Orange and Nutella Babka.

I spotted a few of these on Social Media before I went off to the States on Holiday and had never heard of them before, and then I saw even more out there in supermarkets and bakeries.  They’re an Eastern European invention and are basically a sweet loaf that’s stuck somewhere between bread and cake.  The dough is filled with whatever sweet filling you fancy, rolled up, snipped down the middle and twisted to form swirls.  It’s best eaten straight out of the oven warm; perfect for baking while you’re buried up to your neck in tinsel. 😉

Orange and Nutella Babka (makes one beast of a loaf, or two smaller loaves)

Ingredients

  • 250g strong white flour
  • 250g plain flour (and a little extra for dusting)
  • 15g fresh yeast (dry active)
  • 200ml soda water (a neat little trick to give your loaf a little extra rise)
  • 100ml boiling water
  • 2 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 50 ml melted butter (plus a little extra for greasing)
  • 1 egg (whisked)
  • 1 small jar of Nutella
  • Zest of one Orange
  • 50g Chopped Hazelnuts
  • 50g Chopped chunks of chocolate
  • A little milk to wash.
  1. First things first, you’re going to need to activate your yeast.  Pour the soda water and boiling water into a bowl.  Dissolve the sugar into the water and then sprinkle over the yeast.  Whisk and then leave the bowl somewhere warm for 15 minutes (I use my airing cupboard!) until the yeast begins to froth.
  2. Once the yeast is ready, pour in the melted butter and then add the salt, flour, cinnamon and orange zest.  Stir it together to create a sticky dough.  Turn it out onto a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes.
  3. Once the dough’s been kneaded, pop in a lightly oiled bowl and leave it to prove somewhere warm for one hour.
  4. After an hour, the dough should have doubled in size.  Turn it onto a floured surface and roll it out into a rough square shape that’s about 1cm thick.  Spread the Nutella – taking it as close to the edges as possible – then sprinkle the chopped hazelnuts (hold some back to decorate) and chocolate on top.  Roll it up like a swiss roll and seal each end.
  5. Now to shape the Babka.  Take a sharp knife and cut the dough right down the middle leaving a space at the top (it should look like a pair of legs once you’re done).  Take each leg and turn it so the sticky inside layers are facing upwards.  Now twist one leg over the other until you get a tight plait from one end to the other – making sure you keep those inside layers facing up.
  6. Grease and line a loaf tin and then fill it with your twisted dough. There’s a knack to this bit; you want to make sure the ends are folded under, while the middle is on top.  Cover it with a damp tea towel and leave the dough to prove for another hour.
  7. Set your oven to 200°. Give the surface of the babka a little wash with milk and sprinkle with a few extra chopped hazelnuts and orange zest, then bake it for 30 minutes – covering the top with foil after 15 minutes to protect those layers from burning.
  8. Scoff warm with some extra Nutella! 🙂

Happy Weekend (and happy decorating!)! ♡