Homemade Yeast Bread With Sweet Filling

By Suzette - www.suzette.nu from Arnhem, Netherlands (paasbrood3) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Prep: 60 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 90 mins
Servings: 16 to 20 servings
Yield: 1 bread
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
154 Calories
5g Fat
25g Carbs
4g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16 to 20
Amount per serving
Calories 154
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 5g 6%
Saturated Fat 2g 9%
Cholesterol 43mg 14%
Sodium 99mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 1mg 4%
Calcium 26mg 2%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 85mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Try this breakfast or tea bread for Christmas morning. The braid is reminiscent of a pine cone or "wickelkind" (child wrapped in swaddling), a symbolic start to your day. Filled with jam, almonds and raisins, the bread is just sweet enough to please, but you might enjoy it with a little butter spread on top. This bread can be refrigerated overnight, which makes it a snap to bake for breakfast or Elevensies.

Note that some of the work needs to be done before, including proofing of the yeast.


  • 3 cups (375 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon rapid rise dry yeast

  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) sugar

  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon (125 milliliters) lukewarm milk

  • 3 tablespoons (50 grams) unsalted butter, melted

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup (112 milliliters) apricot jam

  • 1/3 cup (50 grams) whole almonds, ground

  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup (50 grams) raisins

  • 1 large egg yolk

  • Sugar glaze of choice, optional

Steps to Make It

Note: While there are multiple steps to this recipe, this recipe is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and cooking.

Proof the Yeast:

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Lightly spoon the flour into measuring cup or weigh.

  3. Place flour in a mixing bowl and create a hollow in the middle.

  4. Place yeast and 1 teaspoon of the sugar in the hollow, pour the milk over that, and sprinkle a little flour over the milk.

  5. Cover with a clean towel and let the yeast proof for 15 minutes.

Make the Dough

  1. In a separate container, whisk together the butter, eggs, the remaining sugar, and salt until the sugar starts to dissolve.

  2. Add the egg mixture to the flour and yeast and mix with your dough hook until the dough is smooth and satiny, about 5 minutes. The dough will still cling to the bowl a little bit but not be very sticky. You may add up to 1 tablespoon of flour or a sprinkle of water to adjust the consistency.

  3. Butter a clean bowl, gather the dough up into a round ball and place in the bowl, turning once to coat. Cover and let rise for 15 minutes.

Make the Filling

  1. Mix the apricot jam, almonds, and vanilla together to form a thick paste.

  2. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured board to form a 12 x 16-inch rectangle.

  3. Spread the apricot paste down the middle third of the dough. Sprinkle the raisins over the paste.

Braid the Bread

  1. Using a sharp knife, cut 1-inch strips on the diagonal on the two outside thirds, stopping before you cut into the paste.

  2. Fold one end over the filling and begin braiding by folding the strips of dough over each other like crossing arms or lacing up boots.

  3. Finish the braid by folding the far end over before you cross the last 2 strips, to form a package. Don't worry if you can see the filling a little bit.

  4. Place the bread on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet and place in the refrigerator overnight.

Bake the Bread

  1. Heat the oven for 1/2 hour to 385 F. Remove braid from the refrigerator at this time. You will not see any appreciable rise.

  2. Mix egg yolk with 2 to 3 tablespoons of water to make an egg wash and brush it over the braid.

  3. Place the bread (still on a cookie sheet) on the middle rack in the oven, turn oven down to 350 F and bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown and done.

  4. Remove from oven and let cool slightly.

  5. Serve and enjoy.

Recipe Variation

  • You can brush with the bread with a sugar glaze (1 tablespoon sugar, 1 tablespoon water, heat until dissolved) or an American-style powdered sugar glaze (mix 1 cup confectioners' sugar, 2 tablespoons melted butter until crumbly. Add milk by the teaspoon until spreadable or of drizzling consistency).