Chocolate Twist Tsoureki

Chocolate Twist Tsoureki

As much as I love traditions, I also love taking a traditional recipe and giving it a little twist-especially when that twist ends up being the addition of chocolate. It brings some variety (and in this case, more chocolate) to a traditional holiday table.

Adding chocolate to Tsoureki adds a few more steps to what is already a slightly time intensive process, but I think everyone would agree it’s well worth the extra effort. I will admit that I’m waiting for this weekend to cut a piece, but I can usually tell when I have a winner based on the rest of my senses and well-I’d put money on this one.

Chocolate Twist Tsoureki Steps

Tip: Be sure to refrigerate your roll for 15 minutes before cutting and twisting so that your chocolate and dough so they become firm and your roll is easier to cut.

Greek Easter Table

CHOCOLATE TWIST TSOUREKI
Inspired by Akis Petretzikis

Dough:

4 c + 3 tbsp flour
3/4 c luke warm water
2 tbsp active dry yeast
1 1/2 tsp Mahlepi (optional)
1 tsp Mastiha (optional)
1.5 tbsp sugar
3/4 c honey
2 eggs
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
zest of 1 medium orange

Chocolate Filling:

1 c semisweet chocolate chips
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

Egg Wash:

1 egg yolk
splash of milk

3/4 cup sliced almonds

Syrup (optional):

1 c sugar
1 c water

Combine 3 tbsp flour, water and yeast in a large bowl. Sprinkle remaining 4 c flour over mixture covering evenly. Allow bubbles to emerge through the top layer of flour (about 30 minutes). If Mahlepi and Mastiha are not already ground, do so in a coffee grinder with sugar and add to flour mixture.

Add honey, butter, vanilla extract and orange zest to a small saucepan. Warm over medium heat while stirring until butter is just melted. Once butter is melted and mixture is combined, add to flour mixture along with 2 eggs and combine using a mixer or hands. Cover with a towel and allow to rise for 1-2 hours.

Once dough almost ready, melt chocolate chips, butter and cocoa powder and set aside to cool slightly. Divide prepared dough into two using one portion for each loaf. Knead dough and spread out with a rolling pin. Spread chocolate mixture across dough and roll dough beginning with the longest side. Place roll on a cookie sheet and place in refrigerator for chocolate mixture to harden (about 15 minutes).

Once chocolate filling has had time to firm up, remove roll from refrigerator. Using a sharp knife, cut roll longways to create two strips. Turn strips to face up and reveal chocolate filled layers. Carefully twist two strips ensuring that chocolate exposed sides of the strips face straight up and place on a cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.

Cover loaves with a towel and allow to rise for an additional 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk egg yolk with splash of milk and brush gently over each loaf just before putting in oven. Sprinkle with sliced almonds if desired and bake loaves for 35 minutes or until golden brown.

Prepare simple syrup by bringing water to a boil and stirring in sugar until completely dissolved. When loaves are nearing the end of bake time. Carefully brush loaves while still hot out of the oven.

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