Saturday, November 15, 2008

Apple Braid

This is a delicious bread recipe that doubles as breakfast or dessert. It's just sweet enough to satisfy your sweet tooth but not so sweet that it is overpowering. Enjoy!

Apple Braid

2 1/2 cups bread flour
3/4 tsp. salt
2 Tb. sugar or honey
1 Tb. instant yeast (I recommend SAF brand)
1 - 1 1/4 cups very hot water
2 Tb. melted butter or margarine

2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
pinch cloves
2 Tb. flour
2 Tb. butter or margarine

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup softened butter or margarine
1 Tb. water
1 tsp. vanilla

1. Mix all dry ingredients for bread in large mixing bowl with bread hook. Mix until well blended. Add very hot water and melted butter. Mix for 1 minute, until well combined. Check consistency. You want it to be a stick dough, not a dry dough. Add water or flour to get to desired consistency and mix for 5 more minutes.
2. Spray jelly roll pan with cooking spray. Place dough in pan and roll out so it fills the edges of the pan. Cut 4" strips down each of the long sides of the pan, leaving the center uncut.
3. Prepare the filling by mixing all filling ingredients and microwaving in medium bowl for 2 minutes, or until apples are soft and filling is thick. Spoon down center of braid.
4. Starting from the top, fold one strip of bread over diagonally and press it so it touches the bottom of the strip on the other side. Pinch well so it stays in place. Repeat from the other side. Continue until all strips have been pinched onto the opposite side. Pinch together the bottom of the braid so it seals in the filling and fold end under the braid. Repeat with top of braid.
5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cover braid with dishcloth and let raise 25 minutes. Remove dish cloth and bake for 20 minutes, or until bottom and top are lightly browned. Remove braid from baking sheet and place on cooling rack to cool (this prevents the bottom from getting soggy). Cool 5 minutes and top with glaze.

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