I have a little Christmas gift for you today!
Here’s the BEST European (Romanian) Christmas recipe for sweet walnut bread. It’s not actually a bread, it’s more like a delicious sweet, chocolate-y, nutty bread. This dessert should win a place in your Christmas menu because it’s so good. We gave some to our neighbors this year and they loved it! My family asks me to make this every Christmas and New Years now.
And guess what? I made a little video for you all to see how its made. My first ever video tutorial! So you have no excuse not to make it now! The recipe is listed below. Please like, share, pin, comment, instagram it, and most of all- make it.
Here’s the Sweet walnut bread recipe. Recipe instructions translated into English, are all from this blog: Cucina Jugariu
Yields 2 loaves of bread
2 packets of dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs (at room temp.)
2 egg yolks (at room temp, to brush on top of bread dough)
6 cups flour (I usually use 5 1/2 cups so it won’t get too dense)
1 tsp. salt
1 cup butter
2 TBSP rum emulsion (or 4 tablespoons rum essence)
1 TBSP vanilla essence
4 egg whites
40 grams dark chocolate (grated)
2 cups minced nuts
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 TBSP rum emulsion
2 TBSP vanilla essence
4 tablespoons rum essence (one of the secret ingredients to this walnut bread, so it’s important you put plenty of it).
For the filling ~
beat egg whites with sugar. Then add the grated chocolate slowly, followed by cocoa powder, and crushed nuts, and the rum essence.
For the dough~
Mix warm milk with 1 tablespoon of sugar, and add the yeast. Set aside for 5-10 minutes for yeast to activate.
Then add the sugar, eggs, egg yolks, and rum essence, and stir gently. Afterward add the flour and salt. When the batter becomes homogenized, start kneading a bit with the (softened) butter.
The dough will be a bit sticky and soft at first, but don’t add any extra flour. Then, exercise your patience as you knead until the dough becomes elastic (may take 30 min.)
Let rise for 1-2 hours in a warm place until it doubles in size (at least). After the dough grows, punch it to let the air out, and let rise again for 1 hour.
Then divide the dough in two pieces. Roll out both pieces in large rectangular shapes. Spread half of the filling on one piece and half on the other.
Roll up the dough tightly as if making cinnamon rolls. Then fold the roll in half, twist as if making a braid, and place in baking pan.
Let it sit in the baking pan until doubled in size. Do the same for the second piece of dough.
Then use a brush to spread egg yolks on the braids.
Bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes until the dough rises nicely in the oven. Then lower heat to about 350 for 30-35 minutes.
Test the middle with a long thin toothpick to check if ready.
When done, sprinkle powdered sugar on top, let cool slightly, slice and serve!