This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure for details.
Hi Bold Bakers!
With the BBB community being such a mix of cultures I wanted to make sure everyone was represented in my holiday recipes. A traditional treat eaten around Hanukkah is Chocolate Babka, a sweetened yeasted bread typically loaded with a chocolate filling.
What Is Chocolate Babka?
Babka is a sweet braided yeasted bread of Jewish origin, that is popular in the United States and Israel. It is most commonly enjoyed around Hanukkah.
It can be filled with a variety of sweet fillings such as chocolate, cinnamon sugar, apples, sweet cheese, or raisins. Topped with sugar syrup in order to preserve freshness and make the cake moister, it is often also topped with a streusel topping.
Why Is My Babka Dry?
Although a delicious dough, it isn’t an incredibly moist one, to begin with, and that is one of the reasons you have to generously glaze it with a sugar syrup once out of the oven. Just take care not to ‘over bake’ so it won’t dry out and use all that sugar glaze in the recipe.
How to Roll Babka
Spread the chocolate mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 1/2 inch border all around. Brush the end farthest away from you with water to help seal it. Roll up the dough with the filling into a long, tight cylinder. Seal the dampened end onto the log.
Gently, fully cut the log in half lengthwise and lay them next to each other on the counter, cut sides up. Pinch the top ends gently together to seal them. Lift one side over the next, forming a plat or twist and trying to keep the cut sides facing out. If this step makes a mess don’t worry, it will still look great once baked.
How do I store it?
Store your Babka well wrapped at room temperature. I like to heat it a little before I eat it to freshen it up a little.
How long does it last?
Babka will keep fresh for up to 3 days. It also freezes well for up to 3 weeks.
I adapted this recipe from Bromabakery.com who knows a little more about Babka than I. I only know about the eating…
Try These Other Breads!
And don’t forget to follow Bigger Bolder Baking on Pinterest!
Incredible Chocolate Babka Recipe
- 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (10.6oz/302g) all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
- 1/4 cup (2oz/57g) sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 5 tablespoons water
- 1/3 cup (2 ½ oz/71g) butter, softened
- ½ cup (3oz/85g) dark chocolate
- 1/4 cup (2oz/57g) butter
- 1/4 cup (1oz/28g) powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/3 cup (1 ⅓ oz/37g) cocoa powder
- 3 tablespoons water
- 3 tablespoons sugar
To make the dough:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, add the flour, yeast, sugar, and salt. Mix to combine.
- Add in the eggs and water and mix until the dough comes together to form a ball. After a few minutes If the dough looks a little dry add a splash more water until the dough forms a mass and pulls away cleanly from the bowl.
- With the mixer on low, add the butter, a spoonful at a time, mixing until it’s incorporated into the dough. Then, mix on medium speed for roughly 8 minutes until the dough is completely smooth.
- Lightly grease a bowl with oil and place dough inside, cover with plastic and leave to proof at room temperature for 2 hours. Then transfer to the fridge to let it rest overnight.When you are ready to bake shape the dough and roll it to about 1/2 inch thick, in a rectangular shape.
Make Chocolate Filling:
- Melt the chocolate and butter together until smooth. Stir in powdered sugar and cocoa; mixture should form a spreadable paste.
- Spread the chocolate mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 1/2 inch border all around. Brush the end farthest away from you with water. Roll the dough up with the filling into a long, tight cigar. Seal the dampened end onto the log.
- Gently cut the log in half lengthwise and lay them next to each other on the counter, cut sides up. Pinch the top ends gently together. Lift one side over the next, forming a twist and trying to keep the cut sides facing out. Don’t worry if this step makes a mess, just transfer the twist as best as you can into the prepared loaf pan.
- Cover tightly with cling wrap and leave to rise for another 1 - 1 1/2 hours at room temperature.
- Bake the proofed loaf at 375°F (190°C) for roughly 30 minutes or until golden brown. If it browns too quickly, you can cover it with foil. When fully baked, you’ll feel almost no resistance when you push down on top.
While babka is baking, make syrup:
- Bring sugar and water to a simmer until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and set aside to cool down.
- As soon as the babka leaves the oven, brush it generously with the syrup. It will seem like too much but it’s not, trust me! Plus it makes the bread glossy and moist. Let cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool the rest of the way before eating.
- Store leftover babka at room temperature for up to 3 days. It also freezes really well.