This Chocolate Babka is perfect. The dough is soft and delicious, the chocolate ganache gets into every gap. It is truly something you need to make.
This recipe makes two loafs, now don't for a second think, it's too much, it goes very quickly in my house and it keeps quite well. But you could always gift one if you prefer.
Although it is easy to make, you need to give it time to rise, so this is the perfect recipe when you are home on a lazy Sunday, you're cooking, but not too hard.
I used US cupsizes here. 1 US cup = 236ml. 1 US tablespoon is 15ml. But as I've added the gram measurements also, you shouldn't have any problems.
This is easy and is something you just have to try.
Makes 2 loaves
3/4 cup warm milk (NOT hot)
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast, 1 (7g) packet
4 tablespoons (50g) caster sugar, divided
3 1/2 cups (450g) plain flour (+ 1 to 2 Tbsp, if needed)
2 large eggs, room temp
4 tablespoons (56g) unsalted butter, melted, divided (3 tablespoons for batter,
1 tablespoon to brush tops)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup thickened cream
1/4 cup (25g) caster sugar
1 1/3 cup (225g) dark chocolate chips
Grease and line with baking paper a 11.5cm x 21.5cm (base measurement) loaf pan.
In bowl of a stand mixer, add the warm milk, sprinkle top evenly with the yeast and let sit for 7 minutes. Whisk in ½ cup flour and 2 tablespoons of the sugar. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place, at room temperature for 35-45 minutes. It will be puff up.
Whisk in the eggs, 3 tablespoons of the melted butter, the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar, salt and vanilla. Using dough hook on speed 2, add the remaining 3 cups flour (1/2 cup at a time, letting it incorporate between additions). Dough should feel barely sticky to the touch but should not stick to the sides of the mixing bowl. Add an extra 1-2 Tbsp flour if needed. Once all flour is in, continue kneading on speed 2 for 8-10 minutes.
Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place, room temperature for 2 hours. Dough should double in size.
Meanwhile, make the chocolate ganache: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the thick cream with 1/4 cup sugar, stirring until dissolved and cream reaches a simmer then remove from heat.
Add chocolate chips to a medium bowl and pour the hot cream over the top, wiggling the bowl around to ensure chocolate chips are covered. Cover the bowl and let sit for 5 minutes. Remove cover and whisk starting from the center and moving outward until a smooth chocolate sauce has formed. Cool completely to room temperature or until sauce has thickened. To speed set, refrigerate ganache for 10 minutes at a time, whisking to check the consistency.
Once dough has risen, divide it in half. Generously dust flour on a clean work surface and place 1 piece of dough in the center. Sprinkle dough with flour (just enough to keep rolling pin from sticking) and roll into an even 30cm wide by 40cm long rectangle. Spread with 1/3 of the room temperature ganache. Roll the dough up tightly starting with the shorter side. Repeat with second piece of dough, now you spread the dough with 1/2 of the remaining ganache.
Cover both loaves with plastic wrap and refrigerate 15 min. Cut each chilled roll in half lengthwise with a sharp knife, keeping the top 1.5cm of the roll connected. Twist halves together a few times.
Carefully transfer dough to your prepared loaf tins. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temp for 1 to 1½ hours or until puffy.
Preheat oven to 175C/155C fan forced.
Brush loaves with remaining 1 tablespoon melted butter and bake at 175C on the center rack for 30 min or until browned. Brush hot loaves with remaining chocolate ganache over the tops.
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