Saffron Easter Bread
Make A Loaf Of Saffron Easter Bread
Saffron is appropriate for this springtime bread as it comes from the stigmas of a crocus.At one time, the saffron grown in the village of Saffron Walden in Eastern England was highly esteemed throughout the world.
Saffron buns were made there at Easter instead of the more traditional hot cross buns.Now you can celebrate the Easter holiday with a hot, delicious loaf of saffron Easter bread. Just follow the directions in the following recipe to enjoy this wonderful flavored bread.
Wilton Recipe Right 2 Piece Long Loaf Pan Set
Saffron Easter Bread Recipe
1 1/4 cups milk
1 teaspoon saffron strands
1 ounce fresh yeast or 1/2 ounce dried yeast
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups raisins
1/2 cup candied peel, finely diced
Finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
Put the milk in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, sprinkle in the saffron and infuse for 30 minutes.Reheat the milk just to lukewarm, then take off the heat.
Crumble the fresh yeast in a bowl and cream it to a smooth liquid with the saffron flavored milk. Stir in 4 tablespoons of the flour, then cover and leave the mixture for about 20 minutes to become foamy. If using dried yeast, mix the granules with the saffron flavored milk and 1 teaspoon of the sugar and set aside, covered, for about 15 minutes until frothy.
Sift the remaining flour with the salt, then rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in the sugar. Add the yeast liquid and mix to form a soft dough.Turn the dough out on a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic. Knead in the raisins, candied peel, and lemon zest. Shape the dough into a ball, place it inside an oiled plastic bag, and tie the bag closed. Leave the dough to rise in a warm place for about 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
Meanwhile, grease an 8 inch round cake pan with butter. Turn the risen dough out on a lightly floured surface. Knock back and knead the dough lightly, then shape it into a ball to fit the pan. Put it into the pan, pressing down well. Cover and leave to rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes, or until the dough just reaches the top of the pan.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.Bake for 45 to 60 minutes until golden brown and the loaf sounds hollow when tapped underneath. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve in slices spread with butter.