Chocolate Bread

Chocolate Bread

ANOTHER wonderful recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day !  I tell ya, this is the BEST cookbook I've ever owned.

Chocolate Bread is not a sweet bread at all.  If you love dark chocolate, then you will appreciate Chocolate Bread.  I enjoyed it with butter, smeared with peanut butter, smeared with Nutella and smeared with both.  With the Nutella on top, I thought I was eating a frosted brownie.  But I'll be completely honest with you, I didn't love it as much as I love the Fresh N Fruity Oatmeal Bread.

It's still a recipe worth writing about and if you're in the mood for something new, then I recommend it.

From Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, Chocolate Bread

Makes two 1 1/2 -pound loaves.  The recipe is easily doubled or halved.

  • 4 ounces premium bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons granulated yeast (or 2 packets)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons salt
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 5 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup premium unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 5 ounces finely chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • butter or neutral-tasting oil for greasing the cookie sheet

Making the ganache:  Melt the 4-ounces of chocolate and athe butter in a double-bouler or microwave until chocolate is melted.  Blend together and set aside.

Mix the yeast, salt, eggs, and honey with the water in a 5-quart bowl, or a lidded food container.

Mix in the flour, cocoa powder, ganache, and the 5 ounces of chocolate without kneading, using a spoon, a 14-cup capacity food processor (with dough attachment), or a heavy-duty stand mixer (with dough hook).  If you're not using a machine, you may need to use wet hands to incorporate the last bit of flour.

Cover (not airtight), and allow to rest at room temperature until the dough rises and collapses (or flattens on top), approximately 2 hours.

The dough can be used immediately after the initial rise, though it is easier to handle when cold.  Refrigerate in a lidded (not airtight) container and use over the next 5 days.  Beyond 5 days, freeze the dough in 1-pound portions in an airtight container for up to 4 weeks.  When using frozen dough, thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours before using, then allow the usual rest and rise time.

On baking day, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.  Dust the surface of hte refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1 1/2 pound (canteloupe-size) piece.  Dust the piece with more flour and quickly shpe it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go.

Allow the ball the rest and rise on the prepared cookie sheet for 1 hour and  40 minutes (or just 40 minutes if you're using fresh, unrefrigerated dough).  Paint with egg wash

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Place the bread in the center of the oven and bake for about 35 minutes.  Smaller or larger loaves will require adjustments in baking time.

Remove from pan.  Allow to cool before slicing or eating.

Chocolate Bread-peanutbutter-nutella

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