Saturday, February 25, 2012

Culinary Capers Ingredient of the Week: Yeast

Yeast is kind of my thing, so I had to make this one good.

I remember ripping this recipe for Cherry-Almond Babka from a magazine a while back, and stuffing it in the back of my recipe binder. The bottom of the page says "Country Living / May 2009." {Surely I haven't been sitting on this recipe for that long!} I'd never had/seen/thought about babka, but this recipe just caught my eye. I adore almond.

As with most things involving yeast, the road to babka was a long, involved process. The good news is: it's really good!!! The filling is a buttery, brown-sugary spread that contains finely ground toasted almonds and a little almond extract. There are also dried cherries inside.


I kneaded you, so make me proud.

I like to set my dough on the stove top to rise. It gets warm under that light.

All rolled up and ready to go.

Second rise, then an egg wash and a generous sprinkling of sugar.

Josh: "That looks like a big ol' grub worm!"


I'm exhausted, but delighted. This little venture has been one of my proudest kitchen moments. I love it!


{ kitchen tip }
Take your bread's temperature. 
Use a thermometer to check yeast breads for doneness; it's the only way to know for sure. Soft, pillow breads that contain fats should read 180-190º. Drier, crusty breads should read 200-210º. {This guy got done 15 minutes early!}

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