I love making bread- the proper stuff with yeast and a good deal of kneading. It smells great, looks great, and tastes great- when it works that is! Working with yeast can be difficult sometimes, and patience gets overlooked due to the rising/proving times. 

But bread is so comforting.

Whether it be the simple or complex loaf, there are so many variations of bread that exist, and it's pretty much a staple food for probably the majority of people in this world. It can be a simple flour, water, salt mix, but it can be taken to completely new levels with the addition of fruit or vegetables, herbs, nuts/seeds, just sugar, an added egg or milk for richness, it goes on and on!

This bread is traditionally german, and is called a "Hefezopf". Most people have no idea what it is, but basically it's a sweet milk bread, like brioche, which is a name people tend to be more familiar with. 

There's a joy in making bread, too, which is an added bonus. Some might find that it becomes a hassle when so much kneading and waiting is required, but to me, that's the good part- putting in some work for the better result, and generally, the more patience and effort that's put into bread making, the better the turn out tends to be!


2 tsp dried yeast
125ml warm milk
1 large egg
450g plain flour, plus extra
75g caster sugar
1/4 tsp fine salt
75g unsalted butter, melted
vegetable oil, for greasing
1 egg beaten, for glaze


Warm the milk in the microwave, checking it regularly for warmth. It should be at a temperature where when a finger is dipped into it, there is no sting of heat, but enough to feel a good increase in temperature. If you overheat it, you can wait for it to cool, or you can take out some and readjust using cold milk. This is important for the yeast- too hot and the yeast will be killed, to cold and the yeast won't activate. 

Once at the right temperature, dissolve in the yeast. Then, let cool and whisk in the egg. 

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, sugar and salt. Then, form a well in the middle and pour in the egg/milk/yeast mixture. Melt the butter partially, and then stir to melt the leftover solids, so that it doesn't cook the egg. Then, add the butter to the bowl. Gradually draw in the flour with a wooden spoon, mixing until a soft dough forms. 

On a flat, clean and lightly floured surface, knead the dough for 10 minutes until smooth and soft, and pliable. Then, place in a lightly oiled bowl and cover in cling film. Leave in a warm place for 2- 2 1/2 hours until doubled in size. 

Put the dough onto a floured surface and knead it gently to knock out the air bubbles. Then, divide into 3 equal pieces. Take each piece and roll it into a log, then continue to roll it out until they are around 30cm in length. Pinch together the tops of the 3 pieces, and tuck the join underneath. 

Loosely plait the dough, leaving enough space for it to rise. Once at the end, pinch together and tuck under. Lay this on a tray lined with baking paper, and wrap the braid in cling film. Cover in a tea towel and leave in a warm place for a further 2 hours. 

Preheat your oven to 190ºC (170 fan forced). Brush the braid with the beaten egg. Place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until golden. Check if it is cooked where the braid meets. If undercooked- cover in foil and cook for a further 5 minutes. 

Cool for 15 mins before serving. 

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