Darkestnight's Choots-ing Star Bread, in honour of Choto, whose life I have also trapped with this recipe
The Star Bread is a delicious sweet bread of seemingly unknown origins (there is a sweet bread by the same name that originates from the Philippines, but this bread takes the form of a roll and differs in certain ways) that has been adopted largely by American bakers, as well as a certain Argentinian baker. This dish can be adapted to use a number of fillings to great success, but today we will be focusing on the classic cinnamon variety.
Ingredients for the dough
- 200ml lukewarm water
- 240g Self raising flour
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons instant yeast
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
Ingredients for the filling
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 65g of "cinnamon sugar" (A mixture of sugar and cinnamon, proportions to personal preference)
- Begin by mixing your salt, granulated sugar, and yeast with your lukewarm water. By doing this we're activating the yeast and feeding it sugary goodness. The yeast is your friend. Treat the yeast well and it will make your dough rise. You can tell that the yeast has activated by the mixture becoming a sort of frothy texture. Leave to the side for now.
- Cut your butter into cubes, and introduce it to the flour. Begin mixing the butter and flour by hand until the mixture becomes a flaky, crumbly mess.
- Once your yeast has activated, mix the yeast mixture with the flour and butter. If you find the dough is too wet then feel free to keep adding and folding in flour until the dough does not stick to the skin. Once the dough is mixed and has the desired texture, cover your dough with a tea towel and leave somewhere warm and dark. This could be by a radiator, in a preheated oven set at the lowest temperature, or even by your boiler. Leave the dough in it's warm spot for an hour to allow it to double in size.
- Next, take your egg and crack it into a bowl. Then beat the egg. For the next steps you may wish to find a pastry brush or equivalent to have to hand.
- In a separate bowl, mix your sugar and cinnamon. The ratio of sugar to cinnamon is entirely up to you as it's a personal preference, but I tend to go for 2 tablespoons of cinnamon.
- Once an hour has passed remove your dough from the bowl, and divide the dough into 4 equal pieces. Begin preheating your oven to 205°C/400°F.
- Take a rolling pin and roll each piece of the dough into a pancake shape, aiming to make each disc of a similar size to one another.
- Then take your pastry brush and coat the first disc with egg. Make sure to cover the disc but leave a small margin around the edge clear.
- The next step is to take your cinnamon sugar mixture and coat the egg covered disc. Make sure to spread evenly throughout. After doing this, place the next disc on top of the coated disc and repeat. Do this until you place the fourth disc on top. Do not coat the top disc in egg or cinnamon.
(The next steps ideally require a visual to show you what to do, so excuse the unfortunate MS Paint diagrams.)
- Take a cookie cutter around the size of or slightly smaller than your fist, and place it in the middle of the the disc pile. We are NOT using the cutter to cut any dough, merely as a marker.
- Next, take a sharp knife and make four incisions into the dough, using the cookie cutter as your buffer to prevent you from cutting to the middle.
- Now, make another four incisions in-between the previous four incisions.
- Want to take a wild guess what I'm about to ask you to do? You know the drill, make a further four incisions between the previous four.
- You can finally stop slicing your dough disc. Congratulations! Now the fun part begins. Take two of the sections you have created, and twist them away from each other. Then press the ends together to make a twisted arm of dough. Continue to do this to all sections of dough until you have something that looks like this:
- Once you have a star that looks like the above, gently coat the top layer with your beaten egg to help give it a nice golden brown coat.
- Pop the star bread into the oven 12-15 minutes and remove it once it's nice and brown. If you stick a knife in it it should come back clear.
- Leave the bread to cool for 10-15 minutes, but feel free to give it a dusting of icing sugar if you desire.
- Once warm or cool, tear a piece from the bread. Congratulations, you've just made star bread! Enjoy your hard earned treat and share with friends and family.
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charity: water is a nonprofit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries. 100% of donations made to charity: water go straight to the sustainable water projects. The work is incredibly important as nearly 1 in 10 people worldwide still do not have access to reliable sources of clean water. Access to clean water improves health, increases access to food, grows local economies, and helps kids spend more time in school. Since 2016, charity: water has funded almost 79,136 water projects (as of October 2021) across 29 countries, serving more than 13.2 million people. We at Clan Quest are proud to help raise money for this amazing cause, and if you like what we're doing with this Advent Calendar, please consider contributing today. Every donation helps.