Twelfth Night BreadFriday January 15th, 2010
Twelfth Night (Epiphanie) concludes the Christmas holidays and is traditionally celebrated with a big party closing the season. At the feasts, people often eat a special bread or cake with a bean, coin, or figurine baked in it. The person getting the piece with the good luck token becomes the Twelfth Night King or Queen. In the Nrth of France, the tradtionis to make a “galette des rois” made of puff pastry and marzipan whereas in the south of France we make the “royaume” which a sort of orange blossom perfumed brioche.
Ingredients (for 2 small or 1 large loaf)
- 450g strong white bread flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 bags bread dry yeast
- 140ml mixed lukewarm milk and water (half/half)
- 75g butter
- 50g caster sugar
- 2 tsp finely grated lemon rind
- 2 tsp finely grated orange rind
- 2 eggs
- 15ml rhum or brandy
- 15ml orange blossom essence
- 1 egg yolk
- If you like: 100 to 200g candied fruit
- 1 egg white
- 2 tbsp orange blossom essence
- A mixture of candied and glacé fruit slices
- Caster sugar
- Put the flour in a bowl, make an indent in the middle and add the other ingredients. Ideally, you should use a food processor or a bread machine. Important: when you mix the ingredients, do not put the yeast and salt in contact because salt “kills” yeast. Try yo put salt on the side of the bowl.
- Work the dough about 10-15 minutes to make it become very elastic.
- Leave to rise, covered, in a warm place, for one to two hours.
- Sprinkle some flour on your table, put the dough on it and knock it back during 2 or 3 minutes to release all the air.
- If you like candied fruit, had them now. Work the dough thouroughly to fully blend the fruit with the dough.
- Form two balls. With one of your fingers, make a hole in the middle of each dough ball and slowly stretch the dough to form the bread.
- Leave to rise covered with oiled plastic film, in a warm place, for about 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven (180°C).
- When the breads have risen,glaze them with the egg yolk. Put in the oven.
- After 20 minutes, take the breads out of the oven. Leave them to cool.
- When they are cool, mix the egg white with 2 tbsp orange blossom essence. Glaze the breads with it and then decorate with some candied and glacé fruit. Sprinkle with caster sugar.
- Do not foget to put a lucky charm in the bread before eating it….