Chocolate Yeast Bread
This recipe makes 2 gorgeous loaves sparkling with sugar crystals. The chocolate bread has chocolate chunks throughout and a slice reheated in the microwave is divine. This makes a great Christmas morning treat or gift to a friend. This bread is not difficult or complicated to make, the time involved is for double risings and restings. If you prefer you can make this with an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Cooking time includes 6 hours for the starter to proof. It was originally created by Paula Oland of the Balthazar Bakery in New York.
- Ready In:
- 11hrs 40mins
Chocolate Bread Starter
- 1⁄4 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 cup lukewarm water
- 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Chocolate Yeast Bread
- 2 1⁄2 cups bread flour
- 1⁄4 cup good-quality cocoa powder
- 1⁄3 cup sugar, plus
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 cup water
- 1 1⁄4 teaspoons fine salt
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature,plus more for pans
- 3 ounces good-quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
- vegetable oil, for lightly oiling bowl
- 1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
- Chocolate Bread Starter: Dissolve yeast in water for 10 minutes; stir in flour until completely mixed; cover loosely and leave to proof at room temperature 6 hours.
- Chocolate Yeast Bread: Stir and thoroughly mix flour, cocoa, 1/3 cup sugar, yeast, water and 1/4 cup Chocolate Bread Starter (save the remainder for another use); let rest 15 minutes.
- Scrape dough onto floured work surface and knead in salt and butter; knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes; knead in chopped chocolate thoroughly.
- Place dough in lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap; let rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours; leaving dough in bowl, fold dough into thirds as if folding a letter for an envelope, recover with plastic wrap; let rest 30 minutes.
- Butter two 7"x3"x2" loaf pans and coat with remaining 2 T granulated sugar; divide dough in half and then divide each half into 4 even pieces; roll and form each piece of dough into a tight ball; place four pieces, smooth side up, side-by-side in each loaf pan; cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until doubled, about 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375°; combine egg yolk and cream and brush on loaves; sprinkle with turbinado sugar; place in oven, reduce temperature to 350° and bake for 40-45 minutes or until loaves have a slightly hollow sound when tapped on the bottom.
- Let rest in loaf pans for 5 minutes before removing to wire rack.
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This was a really good bread. The edges of my bread were overcooked and I know my oven temp was ok cause I have a thermometer in it. I used Ghiradelli chocolate and it did need a bit more flour. I love the turbinaro sugar on this, it made it quite pretty and tasted good. I will be making this again, thanks for posting.
What a WONDERFUL bread! It has the texture of a brioche and it's not too sweet, just perfect for a special occasion breakfast bread. IMO, all great breads have a starter of some sort - sourdough, sponge, biga or whatever, so I was so excited when, looking for a chocolate bread recipe, I found this one! I made the starter only 4 hours before using it, but it worked very well anyway. In step 2, I dissolved the yeast in water and let it stand until bubbly. Knowing that the organic stone-ground sifted unbleached flour I use is very dry, I added and extra 1/3 cup water, which was perfect. I did knead the mix in step 2 for 10 minutes before the 15 minute autolyse (by trial and error, I found out that this is the way I get the best crumb), and kneaded it for another 10-15 minutes after kneading in the salt and butter. I added in 1/2 cup dried cranberries (it's Valentine's day!!) together with the chocolate pieces. I was afraid this would affect the rise, but not at all (OK, I cheated a bit by addind 1 tsp gluten flour in step 2 to prevent this - looks like it worked), and I loved the contrast of the tangy berries with the chocolate pieces. I let the dough rise (step 4) in the fridge for 7 hours, then took it out and let it rest and come back to room temp for 1 hour. After this, I shaped it into a flower (6 small balls around a bigger one) and put it in a 8 inch cake pan, which turned out to be a little too small! Next time, I think I'll use a cookie sheet for this. We enjoyed pulling apart the little rolls/petals for eating it with cream cheese, YUM! One last change I made: didn't have any cream, so I used milk instead - no problem. Thank you SO MUCH for this recipe!!