Baking is one of my favorite pastimes. I enjoy baking cookies, cakes, breads, pies, muffins, cupcakes, and much more.
Rich Chocolate and Espresso Filling in a Delicious Bread
The bread is quite similar to a chocolate babka. In this recipe, however, I added a couple of twists to the traditional recipe: I made my own chocolate filling, and I also incorporated a rich espresso flavor into the mixture.
Like traditional babka, this chocolate espresso weave bread has a swirl on the inside. It is the perfect snack or dessert to enjoy with the family after a weekend dinner. It would be lovely for a family breakfast on Christmas morning, too!
As usual, to make bread, you have to start with the dough. To make the dough, I started with a yeast mixture with warm milk. I used all-purpose flour, though you could also use bread flour, if you wish.
The chocolate filling is a combination of dark chocolate, milk chocolate, butter, turbinado sugar, white granulated sugar, and espresso morsels. My husband loves anything that's coffee-flavored, so I thought why not add it in with the chocolate filling? My baking experience has taught me that coffee actually accentuates the flavor of chocolate.
I decided to go with a freestyle weaving technique. You don't need to worry about making this bread look perfect!
The bread is delicious whilst it's warm. It's perfect with a cup of coffee or tea. I hope you will try to make this at home and enjoy it as much as we do!
For the yeast mixture:
- 1 cup warm milk
- 2 teaspoons yeast
- 1 tablespoon sugar
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For the dough:
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 8 tablespoons butter, room temperature (I used salted butter)
- 2 eggs yolk plus 1 whole egg, room temperature
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the chocolate filling:
- 1/4 cup dark chocolate chunks
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup espresso morsels
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup turbinado sugar
- 3/4 cup butter
Step 1: Make the Dough
- In a pitcher or bowl, combine the warm milk and yeast. Let the mixture dissolve and set aside for 5 minutes.
- In a mixing bowl, add the egg, egg yolks, vanilla, sugar, and honey. Whisk to combine.
- Add in the milk and yeast mixture and whisk until fully incorporated.
- Gradually add in the flour and mix until it's roughly incorporated.
- Gradually add in the butter and mix until it's roughly mixed.
- With a hook attachment, start mixing the dough until it's fully incorporated.
- Transfer the dough onto a baking mat to shape it into a ball.
- Transfer the dough into a greased bowl. Cover with cling wrap and keep it in the fridge for 3-4 hours.
Step 2: Make the Filling
- Combine dark chocolate chunks, butter, sugar, cocoa powder, semi-sweet chocolate chips, espresso morsels, and turbinado sugar in a medium-sized, microwave-safe mixing bowl.
- Microwave for 1-2 minutes. Stir to combine and set aside.
Step 3: Roll Out the Dough and Apply Filling
- Divide the dough into two equal-sized balls.
- Using a rolling pin, roll out each dough ball into a 16-inch square.
- Using a spatula or a knife, spread the chocolate filling in an even layer over the dough square (see photo tutorial below).
- Starting at the long edge, tightly roll up each dough square jelly-roll style into a tight log. Repeat with the second piece of dough and remaining chocolate sauce.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the logs in half crosswise.
Step 4: Make the Weave
- Place one piece of dough horizontally and place another over it vertically so you have a rough plus sign. Place another piece horizontally over the vertical piece and above the other horizontal piece. (See photo tutorial below).
- Cover loaf with a cling wrap or towel and let it stand in a warm place until they double in size (about 90 minutes).
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Brush the top with an egg wash. Bake the loaf in the center of the oven for about 45 minutes or until a tester inserted comes out clean. Let them cool slightly.
- Optional step: Brush the warm bread with melted butter, and let stand until set.
- Slice the bread and enjoy with your favorite cup of coffee or tea.
© 2021 Liza