Braided Honey Wheat Bread
Makes 1 (12-inch) round loaf
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 cups warm whole milk (105˚ to 110˚)
- ¾ cup plus ⅓ cup honey, divided
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon water
- *Whipped honey
- In a large bowl, whisk together flours and salt. In another large bowl, stir together milk, ¾ cup honey, and yeast; let stand until foamy, about
- Add 1 cup flour mixture, melted butter, and eggs to yeast mixture, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Gradually add remaining flour mixture, beating at low speed until a soft dough forms.
- Turn out dough onto a well-floured surface, and knead for 9 minutes, adding additional all-purpose flour as needed (dough will be slightly sticky). Spray a large bowl with cooking spray, and place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (85˚) until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Spray the outside of a clean, empty 28-ounce can with cooking spray.
- Punch down dough, and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll dough to a 16x10-inch rectangle. In a small bowl, stir together softened butter and remaining ⅓ cup honey until well combined; spread mixture onto dough. Starting at one long side, roll up dough, jelly roll style, into a log. Using a sharp knife, cut dough log in half lengthwise.
- On prepared pan, carefully twist dough pieces, cut side up, around each other, and shape into a circle around empty can (do not remove can). Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (85˚) until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350˚.
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk and 1 tablespoon water; brush mixture onto dough braid.
- Bake until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool on pan for 10 minutes; remove can. Serve warm with whipped honey.
*Whipped honey, also called creamed or churned honey, is available in grocery stores alongside traditional liquid honey.
STEP 1: Starting at one long side, roll dough rectangle into a log.
STEP 4: Shape the twisted dough into a circle around a clean, empty can. The can helps maintain the shape of the circle while the dough rises and bakes.