I could not understand myself why I never tried this recipe. Like many of recipes in my Bread book, this one is no exception, I bookmarked, read and re-read, and planned on making it, but never actually made it. It took me so long to get the actual action really. When I finally did make it, I feel relieved, and most importantly, I liked what I made. It tasted delicious, just like brioche, but better because it has chocolate in it. Who on earth wouldn't want chocolat bread, right?
Chocolate Cinnamon Babka
Recipe adapted from Peter Reinhart's book, Artisan Bread Everyday
Make 1 large loaf
19 g osmotolerant yeast (SAF Gold)
170 g lukewarm milk
85 g unsalted butter, melted - cooled at room temperature
85 g sugar
7 g vanilla extract
85 g egg yolk
425 g unbleached all-purposed flour
7 g salt
egg wash: 1 egg yolk + 1 tsp milk = mix
Chocolate - cinnamon filling:
225 g dark chocolate, cut into chunks or use chocolate chips if you like
1 tsp cinnamon powder
56.5 g cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
Place all ingredients for the dough in a mixer bowl. Using dough hook attachment, knead on the lowest speed for 2 minutes. Increase the speed to medium low (speed #2 on a KitchenAid mixer), continue to knead for 15 to 25 minutes, or until the dough is soft and supple. Gather the dough and form into ball. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover, and let proof at room temperature for 2 ½ hours.
While the dough is rising, prepare the filling. Grind the chocolate to powder in a food processor. Add cinnamon, pulse a few time. Add butter all at once, pulse until the butter is evenly disperse into the chocolate.
Grease the a 5 X 9 -inch loaf pan, line with parchment paper, grease the paper as well.
When the dough is fully risen, roll it out on a lightly work surface to 15 X 15-inch square, and about 1/4 - inch thick. Sprinkle the chocolate filling evenly over the dough, roll it up like a jelly roll, and place the seam side down. Rock the log back and forth to extend its length until it is 18 to 24 -inch long.
Carefully twist the log from both ends, coil the log into snail shape, then stand the coil on its end so it's perpendicular to the counter. Place it in a prepared loaf pan, domed side up. Cover the dough with clean kitchen towel, let it rest in a draft free, warm room temperature until risen for 2 - 3 hours. Or, until the dough is increase to about 1½ times its original size.
Preheat oven to 350℉.
Brush the loaf with egg wash (see note above if you want streusels topping), bake for 25 - 30 minutes, rotate the pan, continue to bake for another 25 - 30 minutes (the total bake about 50 to 60 minutes), or until the loaf sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. Remove from oven, let cool completely before serving.