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Chocolate & Hazelnut Babka

This spongy yeast cake is traditionally baked for Easter Sunday in Poland, Lithuania, Slovakia, Belarus, Ukraine and Western Russia. Yes, I know I’m a little late for Easter but I found this recipe in last month’s Australian Gourmet Traveller and I just had to give it a go.


  • 180ml lukewarm milk

  • 14gm (2 sachets/ 1 tbsp) dry yeast

  • 110gm (0.5 cup) caster sugar

  • 485gm (3.25 cup) plain flour, sifted

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 egg yolk

  • 210gm softened butter

  • 100gm hazelnuts/ almonds

  • 100gm dark chocolate (50% cocoa solids), coarsely chopped

  • Egg wash for brushing

  • Demerara sugar, for scattering


  • 1.

    Combine milk, yeast and 1 tbsp sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle, set aside in a warm place until foamy (5 – 7 minutes). Add 75gm flour, mix to combine, then add eggs, yolk, remaining sugar and a pinch of salt, mix to combine.

  • 2.

    While mixing on low speed, gradually add remaining flour until combined, then add 150gm butter, a little at a time, beat until dough is shiny and elastic (about 5 minutes, dough will be quite soft).

  • 3.

    Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside until doubled in size (1 – 1 ½ hours).

  • 4.

    Preheat oven to 180°C. Place hazelnuts on a baking tray and roast until golden, cool slightly, then rub with a tea towel to remove skins and cool completely.

  • 5.

    Process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form, combine with remaining softened butter to form a paste and set aside at room temperature.

  • 6.

    Knock back dough and divide into two.

  • 7.

    Roll dough on a slightly floured surface into a 20 x 32cm rectangle.

  • 8.

    With longest side facing you, spread over half the hazelnut paste, leaving a 4cm border, then scatter over half the chocolate.

  • 9.

    Roll away from you to form a cylinder, brush ends with a little egg wash, then join ends to make a loop, twist into a figure of eight and place in a 9cm x 19cm loaf tin lined with baking paper. Proof bread for an hour.

  • 10.

    Brush babkas with egg wash, scatter with Demerara sugar and bake in oven for 35 – 40 minutes until golden and cooked through.

  • 11.

    Cool in tins for 10 minutes then turn out, cool on wire rack and serve warm or at room temperature.


Babkas will keep, stored in airtight container for 3 days and are best served warm or in toasted slices.

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Posted by Huda Abu HamdiaReport
This looks interesting.. thanks for sharing..