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Wake and Bake

Chocolate Walnut Povitica

Chocolate Walnut Povitica

[Photograph: Carrie Vasios]

This traditional Croatian and Slovenian bread is made from from a thinly rolled, buttery dough that's filled with walnuts and chocolate.

About the author: Carrie Vasios is the editor of Serious Eats: Sweets. She likes to peruse her large collection of cookbooks while eating jam from the jar. You can follow her on Twitter @carrievasios

adapted from passionate about baking

Chocolate Walnut Povitica

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About This Recipe

Yield:makes one 1 1/4-pound loaf
Active time:30 minutes
Total time:3 hours 30 minutes
Special equipment:stand mixer, rolling pin, 8 by 4-inch loaf pan
This recipe appears in: Wake and Bake: Chocolate Walnut Povitica

Ingredients

  • For Dough
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon sugar, divided
  • 2 cups plus 1/4 teaspoon all purpose flour, divided
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  •  
  • For Filling
  • 1 1/2 cups walnuts
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  •  
  • For Topping
  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten
  • Sugar

Procedures

  1. 1

    Make Dough: In a small bowl, combine yeast, warm water, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon flour and let sit until proofed (mixture will start to bubble), about 5 minutes.

  2. 2

    In a small saucepan, scald milk by heating to just below boiling (about 180°F), then let cool to 110°F, about 2 minutes.

  3. 3

    In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine milk, remaining sugar, and salt. Add yeast mixture, eggs, vanilla extract, and melted butter, and mix to combine. Change to a dough hook, add remaining flour, and kneed until elastic and smooth and dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 5 minutes. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let stand until doubled in volume, about 1 1/2 hours.

  4. 4

    Make Filling: While dough is rising, combine walnuts, sugar, and cocoa powder in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the texture of sand, about 10 pulses. In a medium saucepan, heat milk and butter until just at a boil, then pour over the ground walnut mixture. Add egg yolk and vanilla and stir vigorously until combined. Set aside.

  5. 5

    Assemble: Grease baking dish with butter. Place dough on a clean, floured surface. Roll out until it is a very thin 12-inch square. Cover with filling. Roll the dough carefully from the long end, jelly-roll style, then shape into a U, placing seam side down. Carefully transfer to prepared baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until almost doubled in volume, 30-40 minutes.

  6. 6

    Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Brush dough with egg white then sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 15 minutes. Decrease oven temperature to 300°F and bake until golden on top and a thermometer inserted in the center of the dough reads 200-210°F, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool 15 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.

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