Impressive swirled bread filled with apples and cinnamon!
Babka! What the heck is a babka? I had never even heard of babka until a few days ago! I was watching The Great British Baking Show and the bakers had to make a babka. I was hooked! I knew I had to make one of these impressive loafs of bread. Instead of a traditional babka, I made an Apple Cinnamon Babka!
A babka is a basic sweet dough rolled out as thin as possible and spread with a filling. It’s then rolled, cinnamon roll style and the whole long roll is layered into a bread pan.
It’s pretty unassuming when it comes out of the oven. The elegance and beauty is revealed when you start to slice it open!
Don’t you agree? Beautiful! And the taste is spectacular. There’s a bit of apple and cinnamon with every bite! I think I’m in heaven!
Babkas are traditionally made with chocolate and cinnamon. I did find a few recipes using dried fruit and nuts too. Fresh fruit is probably not traditional, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t amazing! The key to using fresh apples is grating the apples and then squeezing out as much liquid as possible. Apples have a high content of water and if you don’t remove most of it, your bread will turn out soggy in the middle.
Tips for making an apple cinnamon babka:
- Roll out dough as thin as possible. You may need to stretch it a bit by hand too. You will want your dough to be about 24″ by 12″
- If you get a tear in your dough, just pinch it back together.
- Grate apple using a cheese grater. Squeeze grated apple together to remove all excess liquid.
- Spread filling as evenly as possible.
- Roll up, cinnamon roll style and pinch seam together.
- Give a slight twist to your long roll.
- Place dough in a greased pan. Lay the log along one side of the pan. Double back along the other side of the pan. Then lay the last of the dough in the center of the pan. Tuck the end into center.
- After baking remove from pan and place on a baking rack to cool.
- Allow bread to fully cool before slicing.
Rolled sweet bread filled with bits of apples and cinnamon.
- 1/2 cup milk warmed
- 2 1/2 teaspoons yeast
- 2 Tablespoons sugar
- 1 egg
- 3 Tablespoons butter softened
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup grated apple
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Place milk, yeast and sugar in a bowl of a stand mixer. Stir and let stand for 5 minutes until mixture is bubbly.
Add eggs, butter, salt and one cup of flour. Mix together. Gradually add remaining flour until dough forms a ball.
Knead dough in mixer for 5 minutes.
Remove dough and form into a ball. Place in a greased bowl. Cover and let sit until doubled in size, approximately one hour.
When doubled, remove dough and place on a lightly floured surface. Pat dough down and form into a rectangle. Roll dough out into a large rectangle approximately 24" by 12" inches.
Grate apple and squeeze excess water from apple.
Place apple, sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and mix together.
Distribute filling over surface of rolled dough. Using the back of a spoon or an off-set spatula, gently spread filling so it covers all area of the dough.
Roll dough together forming a long log. Gently pinch seam together. Give the log a slight twist, twisting each end in the opposite direction.
Place dough into a greased loaf pan. Lay the log down on one side of the pan. Double back to cover the other side and then lay the remaining part of the log in the center of the pan. Tuck the end of the log into the middle.
Cover and let rise for approximately 45 minutes.
Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 40-45 minutes.
Remove from oven. Let cool for 5 minutes and then remove bread from pan. Continue cooling on a baking rack.
Once bread is fully cooled, slice and enjoy!
Be certain to squeeze water from apples prior to using in filling.
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