Monday, September 7, 2009

Bread Baking

In the past couple of weeks I started baking bread nearly daily and getting more and more in the swing of it. At the begin the bread didn't always come out the way I wanted it, but as they say the more you make the better the result. I try to keep the breads simple and artisan, every bread is done the traditional way, fresh yeast, good flour and no additives. At the moment I am doing Baguettes, French Country Loaves, Ciabatta, Focaccia, German Rye Bread and a Swiss Zopf. The recipes will appear on the blog one by one, as soon as I am sure the recipes are tried and tested.

I thought being Swiss I start with the Zopf, a traditional plated bread which was originally eating Sunday mornings with Butter, Jam and Milk Coffee (half coffee and then half hot milk, just mixed in a big mug, nothing fancy like the Lattes). I got the recipe from a chef friend in Switzerland, it is hhis grandma's recipe from the Bernese mountains and must be about 100 years old if not more. It has been passed down from generation to generation.

Butter Zopf

2 kg Flour
1.2 l Milk
100 g fresh Yeast
200 g melted Butter
50 g Salt

Heat the milk till luke warm and desolve the fresh yeast in it.
Then mix all the ingredients together and knead for at least 10 minutes. This is important as only like this the gluten will bind nicely. Best to use a Kitchen Aid to do the job.
Then let the dough proove at room temperature for about 1.5 hours or till double in size.
Push the dough back and divide into 4 equal pieces, let rest for 10 minutes.
Then form long strings as shown on the photo, and plate them together.
The plated bread has now to rise for another about 45 minutes.
Baste with egg wash and bake at 200 o C (400 o F) for about 30 to 40 minutes, till golden brown.
The bread is ready when it sounds hollow when tapping on the bottom of the bread.
Cool on a rack and have a taster while still a bit warm.

The dough before the proving

The dough after proving

The dough rolled after knocking it back

The Plating


  1. 100 gramm frische HEFE auf 2kg? zehn Würfel Hefe? das Ding wird ja so groß wie das Matterhorn!!

  2. Dear 365 Tage
    Normalerweise nimmt man 40 g frische Hefe pro Kilo Mehl oder 25 g wenn man einen Sauerteig benutzt. Der Zopf braucht etwas mehr um ihm die Leichtigkeit zu geben. In der Schweiz sind die Hefe Wuerfel 40 g schwer. Probier das Rezept einmal aus, Du wirst sehen wie gut das Brot wird.


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