Before I tell you all about this bread, I would like to introduce Catherine, from the food blog Munchie Musings – she’s my new blog buddy and we were introduced to each other by the lovely Kristen and her Adopt a Blogger campaign.
I invite you all to visit Catherine’s blog and I would also like to thank Kristen for such a nice initiative!
I made this braided bread months ago but was not sure if I should post it or not – the bread was huge and I couldn’t get good photos of it. Besides that, the bread was very tender and tasted great, but the flavor of sweetened condensed milk was nowhere near it.
When I read at Nora’s blog that the lovely Eva was hosting Baking Day #06, I changed my mind: I love the shape of this bread and also the effect the poppy seeds give to it.
I got the recipe from Carlota’s website – Carla Pernambuco’s restaurant. I had dinner there on my birthday last year and absolutely loved it. I’m a great fan of her work and this is the second time I make one of her recipes – the first was the wonderful guava soufflé with catupiry sauce.
I prepared the bread a bit differently than it was on the website because I thought the instructions weren’t clear enough; there are eggs on the ingredient list but no mention of them on the making. I used my Kitchen Aid to make the dough but it’s not mandatory: you can blend the liquid ingredients+butter+salt and then add the flour using a wooden spoon (like the original recipe suggests).
Sweetened condensed milk braided bread with poppy seeds
1 can (395g) sweetened condensed milk
1 can warm water (use the condensed milk can to measure it)
100g unsalted butter, softened
50g fresh yeast
1 tablespoon salt
1kg all purpose flour
1 egg yolk, lightly beaten, to brush the bread
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
Place the yeast and the water in the bowl of a stand mixer; mix well to dissolve the yeast.
Add the sweetened condensed milk, salt and butter and, using the paddle attachment, beat well. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Switch to the hook attachment and, beating in slow speed, add the flour, gradually. Once you added all the flour, beat until you get a smooth dough. Cover with cling film or plastic wrap and set aside - let the dough rise until almost doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
Remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a lightly floured surface. Knead a few time and form a ball; divide dough in 4 equal parts and make 40cm (15in) ropes with each part. Place the ropes on a very large greased baking sheet (mine was 40x26cm) and braid them. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 160ºC/320ºF; beat the egg yolk with 1 tablespoon water and brush the bread with it. Sprinkle the poppy seeds over the bread and bake for 30-40 minutes or until beautifully golden and cooked through – if it starts browning too fast, cover it loosely with foil.