This delicious babka is made with a soft yeasted dough and topped with homemade dark chocolate filling. It’s the perfect thing to eat for a sweet breakfast or even an afternoon pick-me-up with a nice cup of coffee or tea. It’s super delicious and an all-time favorite in my home!
- ¾ cup (177g) – warm water, 100° Fahrenheit
- 1 tsp – granulated sugar
- 1 ¼ teaspoon – active dry yeast
- 2 ½ cup (320g) – bread flour
- 3 tablespoon (38g) – granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon – salt
- 2 tablespoon (42g) – vegan butter, softened at room temp
Chocolate Filling (See notes):
- 3 oz (84g) – chopped chocolate
- 1 tablespoon (14g) – melted vegan butter
- 1 tablespoon (15g) – powdered sugar
- ¼ cup (52g) – granulated sugar
- ¼ cup (52g) – water
- Stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment
- 2 – Small saucepan
- Medium mixing bowl
- Sharp knife
- Pastry/silicone brush
- Mix in 1 teaspoon of sugar in warm water until fully dissolved, and then mix in the active dry yeast and set aside for 10 minutes to activate.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the bread flour, granulated sugar, salt and make a well in the middle. Add in the activated yeast mixture along with the softened butter to the dry ingredients.
- On the stand mixer, fitted with the dough hook attachment, mix all the ingredients on low until the dough starts coming together. Set the speed to “2” and knead the dough for 10-12 minutes. You’ll know your dough is fully kneaded when it springs back lightly if you press on it. (If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can knead the dough by hand)
- Remove your dough from the bowl, and shape it into a smooth round ball. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl (you can use the same bowl). Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and set it aside in a warm area. Allow it to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. (See notes)
- While you wait for your dough to rise, make the chocolate spread. On a double boiler, melt the chocolate. Add in the melted butter to the melted chocolate and whisk until fully emulsified. Finally, mix in the powdered sugar until you have a spreadable smooth paste. Set aside. (See notes for microwave option)
- When your dough has doubled in size, punch it down to release the gas. On a lightly floured work surface, roll the dough into a 12-inch x 16-inch (30x40cm) rectangle. Spread the chocolate filling and leave a 1-inch border all around.
- On the 16-inch (40cm) side, roll up the dough tightly. With a sharp knife, trim both ends and gently cut the dough in half length-wise.
- Face the cut side up, starting from the bottom, tightly twist until you reach the top. Pinch both ends together.
- Transfer the bread to a lightly greased bread pan. If your dough is too long to fit your pan, like mine, coil it in. You can also cut it in half and put it in two bread pans. Cover the pan with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and allow the bread to rise again for 45 minutes or until double in size. At the last 15 minutes of the rise time, preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit and bake for 40-45 minutes.
- While you wait for your babka to finish baking, make the sugar syrup. In a small saucepan, mix together sugar and syrup until the sugar is fully dissolved. Heat the pan over medium heat and let it come to a boil. Turn off the heat and set it aside.
- When the babka is done baking, quickly brush the sugar syrup over the top of the bread. Let the sugar syrup seep into the bread, and allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the babka from the pan and let it finish cooling on a rack. Serve immediately and enjoy!
- You can also buy Nutiva Chocolate Hazelnut Spread (I didn’t have time to buy, so I just made my own!)
- During winter, I like to have my dough rise in a cold oven, with just the oven light on. Let your friends or family know that your dough is in there, they might accidentally turn on the oven!
- To melt your chocolate in the microwave, take a bowl that is microwave safe, I prefer using a plastic bowl. (If you only have glass that is fine, glass tends to heat up faster and can cause the chocolate to burn. So just be careful) Heat the chocolate in 15-second intervals, and mix in between. Continue to do this until all the chocolate has been melted. Do not melt the chocolate more than 15 seconds at a time.