Vasilopeta (Greek New Year's Bread)
photo by linkot_4965160
- Ready In:
- 5hrs 20mins
- 2 packages active dry yeast
- 1⁄2 cup water (105 - 115degreesF)
- 2 cups warm milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 10 -11 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 large eggs, plus
- 3 egg yolks
- 1⁄2 cup unsalted butter or 1/2 cup margarine, melted
- 1 teaspoon fresh-grated lemon, rind of
- 1 large egg, beaten with
- 2 tablespoons water
- In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water, add milk and salt.
- Stir in 3 C flour, batter will be lumpy.
- Let rise in a warm place about 90 minutes till double in volume.
- Mix in sugar, eggs, yolks, butter and lemon peel.
- Stir in enough flour to make a soft dough (7-8C).
- Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead 5- 10 minutes till smooth and elastic.
- Shape into a ball and place in large greased bowl,turning to bring greased side up.
- Cover and let rise till doubled, about 60-70 minutes.
- Punch down dough and knead 1-2 minutes; let rest 10 minutes.
- Grease 2 bread pans.
- Cut dough into 2 equal pieces.
- Cut one piece into 3 equal pieces and roll each into a 15 inch cylinder.
- Braid the 3 cylinders, pinching the ends to seal.
- Tuck ends under and place in prepared pan.
- Repeat with remaining half of dough.
- Cover loaves and let rise till double in volume, about45 minutes.
- Heat oven to 350, brush top of loaves with beaten egg, and bake 45- 50 minutes till bread sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- If bread seems to be getting too brown after 20 minutes or so, cover them loosely with foil.
- Remove from oven and cool on wire racks 5 minutes.
- Remove loaves from pans and cool completely.
Questions & Replies
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Yogi has the best bread recipes on Zaar. We were going away to visit relatives over the weekend and I made up a batch of these braided and passed it off as challah. The egg yolks make this bread super rich, and the lemon zest makes it really special! I used soy milk to keep the recipe non-dairy, and kneaded the whole thing by hand (very good when you are super-stressed, I kept working the dough imagining it was all the people who had gotten up my nose that week). I braided the dough, but then baked them in loaf tins, so they rose up beautifully. Yogi, together with your Tasty Buns, you are my Bread Queen!
Wonderful! I made half of the recipe, making up one small braid, but shaping the rest of the dough into buns filled with apple cooked with honey and cinnamon. I got about 25 40-gram buns, and 1 235-gram braid. The dough is so easy to work with and delightfully tender and light. Thank you very much for the recipe, Yogi.