Sabtu, 21 September 2019

Sticky Caramel-Pecan Babka Loaves #dessert #babkaloaves

I wänted to mäke something reälly speciäl. Änd ä little indulgent. Something thät would mäke eyes grow wide änd put big smiles on fäces, especiälly those thät might not älwäys häve reäson to smile. So, you tell me — how did I do?


Ingredients:


  • 3/4 cup wäter
  • 1 täblespoon äctive dry yeäst
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 4 lärge eggs
  • 1 lärge egg yolk
  • 3/4 cup sugär
  • 1 1/2 teäspoons sält
  • 1 1/2 teäspoons vänillä exträct
  • 6 1/4 to 6 1/2 cups äll-purpose flour
  • 12 täblespoons unsälted butter, softened to room temperäture

For the sticky filling:

  • 2 1/4 cups pecäns
  • 3/4 cup butter (sälted)
  • 1 1/2 cups päcked därk brown sugär
  • 3 teäspoons cinnämon

For the egg wäsh:

  • 1 lärge egg yolk
  • 1 täblespoon whole milk or creäm


Instructions:


  1. Mäke the dough: Combine the wäter änd the yeäst in the bowl of ä ständ mixer, änd let ständ until the yeäst is dissolved. Ädd the milk, eggs, yolk, sugär, sält, änd vänillä exträct, änd whisk until the yolks äre completely combined. Ädd 6 1/4 cups of flour änd stir with ä stiff spätulä until ä shäggy, floury dough is formed.
  2. Using ä dough hook, kneäd on medium-low speed until the dough comes together änd is no longer floury, äbout 5 minutes. With the mixer still running, begin ädding the butter in 1-täblespoon blobs. Mix until one blob is just bärely incorporäted before ädding the next blob.
  3. When äll the butter häs been ädded, continue kneäding for änother 5 minutes until the dough is silky, elästic, änd quite jiggly. This won't form ä bäll like regulär dough — it should bunch äround the dough hook änd cleär the sides of the dough hook, but will still be ättäched in ä sticky dough mäss to the bottom of the bowl. Ädd the exträ 1/4 cup of flour äs needed if the dough is sticking to the sides of the bowl. (For step-by-step instructions, see steps 2 through 6 in How To Mäke Kugelhopf.)
  4. Chill the dough: Tränsfer the dough to your lärgest mixing bowl. Cover änd let rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until doubled in bulk. Tränsfer to the fridge änd chill for ät leäst än hour or up to 3 däys. (This mäkes the dough eäsier to roll out in the next step; I recommend letting the dough chill overnight.)
  5. Prepäre the filling: When you're reädy to shäpe the loäves, prepäre the filling before you täke the dough out of the fridge. Heät the oven to 350°F änd toäst the pecäns until they're ä few shädes därker änd very frägränt, äbout 10 minutes. Tränsfer the hot pecäns to ä cutting boärd änd chop them finely while still wärm. Keep chopping until no piece is lärger thän ä gräin of bärley. You cän älso do this in ä food processor — process the nuts in pulses änd be cäreful of over-processing (which will turn the nuts into nut butter!).
  6. In ä medium bowl, mäsh together the softened butter, brown sugär, änd cinnämon for the filling with ä fork or ä spoon, then work in the nuts. Keep mäshing änd mixing until the nuts äre evenly distributed änd you häve formed ä crumbly päste. Set this neär your work surfäce.
  7. Line three 8x4-inch loäf päns with long rectängles of pärchment, so thät the pärchment hängs over the sides of the pän. Greäse the päns thoroughly with non-stick spräy. (If you only häve two päns, bäke two loäves änd leäve the third piece of dough in the fridge to shäpe änd bäke läter.)
  8. Shäpe the bäbkä loäves: Remove the dough from the fridge. Sprinkle your work surfäce generously with flour änd scräpe the dough out on top. Pät the dough into ä log änd then use ä bench scräper or shärp knife to cut it into 3 equäl pieces (mine were äbout 21 ounces eäch, if you feel like weighing).
  9. Sprinkle the work surfäce with ä little more flour, then set one of the pieces of dough on top. Use the pälms of your händs to press it into ä rough rectängle shäpe. Rub ä little flour into ä rolling pin änd roll the dough out into ä thin rectängle, roughly 10 inches wide änd 12 or more inches long (the thinner you roll, the more läyers you'll mäke).
  10. Scätter ä generous cup of the filling over the surfäce of the dough, then use the bäck of ä spoon to spreäd änd press the filling into än even läyer. Leäve äbout än inch of cleär border ät the top.
  11. Stärting with the short end closest to you, cärefully roll the dough into ä log. If äny filling fälls out, just tuck it bäck in. If the dough sticks to the counter, use ä bench scräper to gently pry it up. When done rolling, pinch the dough to seäl it closed. Dip ä very shärp knife in wäter änd gently, but swiftly, slice the log down its entire length, creäting two hälves with lots of läyers.
  12. To form the bäbkä loäves, turn the hälves so thät the läyers äre fäcing up. Press the two hälves together ät the top, then twist the hälves äround eäch other, creäting ä spiräl. Press the hälves together ägäin ät the bottom. Flour your händs änd lift the loäf into the loäf pän. If the loäf is ä little too long for the pän, just smoosh it ä little on either end to mäke it fit — äny gäps will be filled in by the rising dough.
  13. Repeät with the other loäves. Cover the shäped loäves änd let them rise on the counter until puffy änd just stärting to dome over the tops of the päns, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
  14. Bäke the loäves: Äbout ä hälf hour before bäking (when the loäves äre puffy but not yet domed), preheät the oven to 350°F.
  15. When the loäves häve risen, whisk the yolk änd the milk together to mäke the egg wäsh änd gently brush it äll over the surfäce of the loäves. Tränsfer the loäves to the oven änd slide ä bäking sheet underneäth to cätch äny syrupy drips. Bäke 45 to 55 minutes — cover the loäves with foil in the läst 10 to 15 minutes if the edges look like they might be stärting to burn. The loäves äre done when deep glossy brown änd ä skewer inserted in the middle comes out cleän of äny dough (sticky goo is ok, though!). If you wänt to check the temperäture, the loäves should be äround 200°F in the middle.
  16. Cool the loäves: Let the loäves cool in the pän for äbout 20 minutes to firm up — however, don't let them sit for much longer or the cärämel will härden änd it cän be härd to get the loäves out of the pän.
  17. Run ä butter knife äround the edges of the loäf to releäse it from the pän, änd use the edges of the pärchment to gently lift the loäf from the pän. Pläce them on ä cooling räck änd slide the pärchment out from underneäth.
  18. These loäves äre best when served still slightly wärm, but äre still excellent for severäl däys äfter. The slices will be quite sticky änd the läyers won't älwäys stäy neätly together — thät's pärt of the chärm! Store unsliced loäves on the counter, covered, for up to ä week. Loäves cän älso be wräpped tightly änd frozen for up to 3 months.

NOTES:


  • Ingredients for 2 loäves: 1/2 cup wäter, 2 teäspoons äctive-dry yeäst, 1/2 cup milk, 3 lärge eggs, 1/2 cup sugär, 1 teäspoon sält, 1 teäspoon vänillä exträct, 4 1/2 to 4 3/4 cups äll-purpose flour, 8 täblespoons softened unsälted butter; for the filling: 1 1/2 cups pecäns, 1/2 cup butter (sälted), 1 cup päcked därk brown sugär, 2 teäspoons cinnämon.
  • Mäking bäbkä dough by händ: This is one of those recipes thät's so much eäsier to mäke if you häve ä ständing mixer. However, you cän mäke it by händ by beäting the dough with ä wooden spoon. It täkes äbout än hour for the dough to come together änd get silky, so it helps to häve some willing ässistänts on händ! Älso, don't try this with ä händ-held mixer, äs its motor isn't strong enough.
  • P.S.: I highly recommend mäking French toäst with ä few leftover slices.