Yeast Braid Bread Recipe

A traditional Hefezopf sweet bread braid made with yeast, flour, milk, eggs and butter. Often flavored with fruit or nuts, it is enjoyed during spring and Easter.

Yeast Braid is an easy bread recipe that can be enjoyed any time of year. It is light and fluffy with just a hint of sweetness, perfect for sharing!

German Hefezopf is a classic braided bread that’s often served with a little butter or with fruit jam for breakfast. It’s a popular holiday treat in Germany and other European countries.

The dough is made with a mixture of yeast, sugar, salt and milk; it’s then kneaded and left to rise before being braided into a loaf. The resulting bread is usually very soft and tender on the inside and is finished with almonds or sugar crystals.

Scald the milk, which helps the yeast to work and rise better (see notes below).

In a large bowl or in the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the yeast, sugar, and salt. Warm up the milk to about 110degF. Pour the milk over the yeast and let it sit until frothy, about 5-10 minutes.

When the yeast mixture is frothy, add the melted butter and egg. Stir to combine, then add the flour in two additions, stirring until the dough is smooth and elastic. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead until the dough is soft and elastic. Once the dough is smooth and elastic, cover it with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled, about 2 hours.

To braid the dough, transfer the risen dough to a lightly floured surface and gently divide it into three parts. Roll out each piece into 12-13-inch “snakes” and braid them together. Once the bread is braided, brush the top with oil or water and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Then let it rise until it is puffy and almost doubled, about 60 to 90 minutes.

This braided German bread is a classic and delicious sweet bread that’s typically eaten around Easter, but it’s also tasty anytime of year. It’s a soft and fluffy bread with just a touch of sweetness, and it’s always been a favorite in our household.

You’ll need some pantry staples to make this homemade yeast bread: whole milk, sugar, butter, instant yeast, and flour. The nutmeg in this recipe gives it a delicious flavor that’s perfectly complemented by the lemon curd filling. You can use any other type of filling that you like–raspberry jam, strawberry preserves, apricot jam, or even just some whipped cream would be great in this recipe!

The final step is to add the lemon curd filling to each dough strip and then crisscross them. To do this, begin with the top strip of dough and then lift that strip over the filling and fold it over until there are just two strips left. Once you’ve done that, repeat on the other side to complete a braided bread loaf!

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