Bake It Buttery! Buttery Blueberry Babka

recipe

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

I basically make what I want to eat and I woke up one day wanting to eat a delicious ribboned babka bread, with plenty of butter and eggs so that it was as buttery as a brioche. I used some of Valentina's duck eggs in this although I know that they're hard to get so you can use chicken eggs too. The smell of this jammy bread baking is a prelude to how delightful this babka bread is. I ate a whole slice without pause and reached for another shortly after.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

A couple of weeks ago I came home from overseas to find that we had a new guest in our apartment. I was making a cup of tea and I opened up the tea drawer and out scurried a rat. Nigel the rat (I had to give him a name) ran under the fridge never to be seen again.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

I screamed and shuddered. While I don't have a particular rat phobia it was still a living, breathing thing that we hadn't invited in. I messaged Mr NQN who (unhelpfully) asked if I was sure that it was a rat and not a cockroach.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

"Unless cockroaches are now 10cms (4 inches) big then no!" I answered still highly agitated. "Yeah I thought I heard some rustling in the kitchen..." he mused.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

I don't know why rats appear and I try and keep our place as clean as possible. I have a thing for clean floors so I vacuum every second day and wash dishes up straight away. I think Mr NQN started to feel quite guilty that it was his habits that "invited" Nigel to move in.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Mr NQN will do strange things like take Teddy's food and put it on the placemat (out of the bowl-whyyyy?) and then fall asleep and clean it up in the morning. For me, if Teddy doesn't eat his food within 30 minutes I'll put it away.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

In fact for the first time ever he volunteered to clean out the pantry in an effort to find Nigel's nest (which we still haven't found). Mr NQN was keen to suggest that Nigel had left our place. "I think he got a fright and decided to leave," but I don't know about that...and I made sure not to encourage Nigel by leaving around any blueberry babka!

So tell me Dear Reader, do you have any tips for dealing with a rat? Have you ever had a rat?

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Blueberry Scroll Ring

An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott

Preparation time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

  • 450g/1lb. bread flour
  • 125g/4ozs. caster or superfine sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoons instant dried yeast
  • 2 duck eggs (or 3 chicken eggs), lightly beaten
  • 50ml/1.7flozs. water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 150g/5ozs. butter, cubed, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup blueberry jam
  • Egg wash

For vanilla icing

  • 1 cup icing sugar, sifted
  • 2-3 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Step 1 - Mix the flour, sugar, yeast, eggs, water and vanilla together in the bowl of an electric mixer. Fit the mixer with a dough hook.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Step 2 - Knead for 3-4 minutes and then add the butter a few cubes at a time. Knead until elastic (around 10 minutes). Shape into a ball and place in a bowl and cover and place in a warm, draught free area. Allow to rise until twice in size (1-2 hours). Punch down and knead in the salt.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Step 3 - Line a 20cm/8inch spring form pan on the base and sides. Flour a large surface and roll out the dough until 40x30cms (16x12inches). Spread with the blueberry jam and roll up along the longest side. Cut in half lengthways and then twist carefully. Curl up into a circle and place in the tin and add the second piece curling that around it. Cover and place in a warm area and allow to double in size. Brush with eggwash.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Step 4 - Preheat oven to 180C/350F and bake for 20 minutes. Then cover (to prevent the jam burning) and bake for 25 minutes.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Twirl to create twist pattern

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka

Curl up both to form a ring

Step 5 - Mix the icing sugar, water and vanilla and make a vanilla glaze and drizzle over the warm bread.

Blueberry Scroll Ring Babka