My mom was born and raised in Berlin and for a short period in my teens we moved over to Germany, becoming ‘regular’ culturally non German ‘Germans’.
During this time, I attended a typical high school in the small town we had moved to (two hours from the wonderful city that is Berlin) and I took cooking class or Hauswirtshaft as it’s called there. Basically a ‘how to’ in how to have a successful household, this included smart sense ‘money’ lessons in how to save and set aside income for regular outgoings.
I still to this day have the cooking folder from that class and this was one of the recipes we attempted during my attendance. I can’t remember how it turned out all that time ago, so I knew it was time to try this out again.
Now, I’m going to make a confession, I screwed up twice on this recipe. Not once, but twice, and you can’t taste the difference, but the difference is definitely there.
*Note: This recipe was updated with better images in 2017.
Hefezopf – German Plait Bread
Adapted from Foody Food
Makes 1 loaf
4 cups plain flour
1/2 cup superfine/caster sugar
2 packages of instant dry yeast (equivalent to three tablespoons)
Pinch of salt
200 grams/7 ounces butter, melted
1 cup warm milk
Mix all dry ingredients together. Slowly add the warm milk and melted butter. Once the mixture is combined, add half the egg.
Knead the dough until it is smooth. Place in a bowl and set somewhere preferably warm for an hour and a half.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/355F. Knead the dough consistently for approximately 5 minutes and then divide into three equal portions.
Roll out into long thin strips of equal length.
Take the three pieces and push one end together then slowly move each piece of dough into the center…plaiting the bread together.
Once you have finished the plait, press the ends firmly together.
Brush on the remaining half an egg.
Bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve with butter and sweet jam.