It’s been confirmed that the Great British Bake Off is back and set to return to our screens for another series, meaning more stunning showstoppers, soggy bottoms and Hollywood handshakes are just around the corner.
Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith, Matt Lucas and Noel Fielding will be back in the bake-off tent on Tuesday 21st September at 8pm. Get your bakeware ready, don your recipe books and settle in to watch who will be crowned star baker each week. To celebrate we’ve shared a tried and tested technical bake from the GBBO to get you in the mood. Let’s see if you can handle the challenge! On your marks, get set bake!
Paul Hollywood Chocolate Babka
- 65g blanched hazelnuts
- 10og unsalted butter
- 150g caster sugar
- 80g 70% dark chocolate, chopped
- 40g cocoa powder
For the dough:
- 5g fast-action dried yeast
- 275g plain flour
- 25g caster sugar
- ½ tsp fine salt
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 50ml whole milk
- 80g unsalted butter, cubed and softened
For the syrup:
- 100g caster sugar
- 100ml water
- Heat the oven to 200 degrees or 180 degrees for fan assisted.
- Make the filling by tipping the hazelnuts on to a baking tray and roast in the oven for 4-5 minutes, until light golden brown.
- Place the butter, sugar and chocolate in a pan and melt slowly over a low heat, stirring until smooth or combined. Remove from the heat and stir in the cocoa powder. Pour into a bowl and leave to cool and thicken slightly.
- Make the dough. Tip the flour in to a bowl, add the yeast to one side and sugar and salt to the other side of the bowl.
- Mix together and start to add the butter, a little at a time. You may want to use a stand mixer instead. Allow the butter to incorporate before adding more.
- Once all the butter is added, continue kneading the dough through the sticky stage until you have a ball of smooth, silky dough.
- Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough to 40 x 30cm rectangle with the long edge closest to you.
- Spread the cool chocolate mixture over the dough, leaving a 1cm border all round. Sprinkle over the toasted hazelnuts.
- Starting from the long edge of the dough closest to you, roll up the dough into a tight spiral. Ensure the seam in underneath.
- Trim the edges to neaten. Next, turn the roll through 90 degrees clockwise, so that one of the short ends is closest to you. Using a large, sharp knife slice length way down through the middle of the dough, cutting it into 2 long pieces.
- With the cut side facing upwards, gently press the top of each half together to seal then lift the right half over the left half, followed by the left half over the right half. Repeat, twisting the dough to make a two-strand plait, then gently press the bottom ends together to seal.
- Carefully lift the loaf into the lined tin and cover with a clean towel (or proving bag). Leave at room temperature for about 2 hours until doubled in size.
- When the babka has proved, bake it for 15 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 170 degrees or 150 degrees fan assisted and cook for 30 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
- Make the syrup. Tip the sugar and 100ml water into a saucepan, bring to the boil over a medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Reduce the heat and simmer, without stirring for 5 minutes until syrupy. Leave to cool.
- When the babka is ready, transfer it whilst in the tin to a wire rack. Brush the cooled syrup over the hot babka, then leave in the tin until warm enough to handle. Turn out onto a wire rack and serve warm at room temperature.
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