Monday, November 23, 2009

Kugelhopf

Kugelhopf is a German bread/cake that reminds me a bit of Italian panettone, but without that sourdough taste that panettone has. It's a very soft and airy raisin bread, basically.

I didn't have a Kugelhopf pan, so a Bundt had to do.

The mise en place.


It's a very... um, sticky! dough. Because this is bread, with yeast, you still need to knead it, but all the kneading happens with a wooden spoon. There's quite a lot of pull on the dough, so that's not as easy as it sounds. (Of course, it's much easier if you have a stand mixer with a dough hook. But for those of us who cannot afford such luxuries... it's all elbow grease.)


This recipe is kinda funny because you have to keep slapping down the dough after it rises. To keep it from over-poofing, I suppose. I mean, overall, it's still rising, but I guess you need to keep it in check somewhat. Mid-poof:


Maybe there's a reason why people put this bread into a Kugelhopf pan (it looks like a tall turban). Somehow the Bundt pan made this a little anti-climactic. It's too short! But still tasty, indeed. After it's all baked and cooled:


See below for the recipe!



Kugelhopf

Recipe courtesy Dorie Greenspan

1/3 cup moist, plump raisins
Scant 1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/3 cup just-warm-to-the-touch whole milk
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
3 tablespoons sugar
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter
Sugar, for dusting
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting


Bring a little water to a boil in a small saucepan and toss in raisins. Turn off the heat and let steep for 2 minutes, then drain the raisins and pat them dry.

Put the yeast and milk in the bowl of a stand mixer and, using a wooden spoon, stir until the yeast is dissolved. Add the flour and salt and stir just to moisten the flour.

In a small bowl, beat the eggs and yolk together lightly with a fork. Fit the mixer with the dough hook, if you have one, and, working on low speed, pour in the beaten eggs, mixing until they are incorporated. Add the sugar, increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the dough comes together and smooths out a little, about 5 minutes. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and add the butter in 4 to 6 additions, squeezing each piece to soften it before adding it and beating until each one is almost fully incorporated before adding the next.

When the butter is blended in, the dough will be very soft. Increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed, until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and climbs up the hook, about 10 minutes. Remove the bowl from the mixer, and stir in the raisins.

Scrape the dough into a clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in size, about 1 1/2 hours.

Deflate the dough by lifting it up around the edges and letting it fall back into the bowl. Cover the bowl again and put it in the refrigerator. Slap the dough down in the bowl every 30 minutes until it stops rising, about 2 hours. Then, if you have the time, let the dough rest in the refrigerator overnight.

Generously butter a 9-inch Kugelhopf mold (8- to 9-cup capacity) and put the chilled dough in the pan. Cover the pan lightly with buttered parchment or wax paper and let the dough rise in a warm place until it comes almost to the top of the mold, 2 to 3 hours.

When the dough has almost fully risen, center a rack in the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.

Remove the paper and bake the Kugelhopf for 10 minutes. Cover the pan lightly with a foil tent and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the Kugelhopf is golden brown and has risen to the top of the pan.

Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with foil and place a rack over it. Remove the kugelhopf from the oven and unmold it on the rack.

To soak the cake: Melt the butter and gently brush the hot cake with it, allow the butter to soak into the cake. Sprinkle the hot cake lightly with sugar and cool it to room temperature. Right before serving, dust the Kugelhopf with confectioners' sugar.

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: (including rests) 6 hours
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: Medium

1 comment:

Allan said...

Hi

I found your blog while searching for tea eggs and I just love it!

This recipe turned out really great for me.

Keep up the great work :)