Eventually, I knew, I would have to bake a Babka. Simple enough: an enriched dough, then a buttery layer on top, then roll it up … and then it gets difficult. The dough is sliced longways and platted, like a brioche crown, then placed into a loaf tin to rise and bake. So the dough has to fill out enough to form the loaf shape, with a consistent swirl of filling with each slice.
I tried a loaf with my Taster, Bailey, who couldn’t fault it, so I made two loaves for the Great Dixter Spring Plant Fair Cake Stall.
Two Chocolate and Walnut Babkas, glazed with Sri Lankan coconut treacle
And two very charming women were kind enough to let me photograph the proof that they were edible!
Two charming ladies at the Great Dixter Plant Fair
I greatly admire Felicity Cloake’s column in The Guardian on How to Cooke the Perfect … [http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/series/how-to-cook-the-perfect] and was particularly struck by her Pecan and White Chocolate Blondies, which are, essentially, Brownies without cocoa.
One of the things that struck me was that she advised that you got a better Blondie with a bit of a lift from baking powder … so why not, I thought, do the recipe with some sourdough starter mixed with the flour? I added 50g of starter to the flour and was very pleased with the results.
Felicity Cloake’s recipe from The Guardian, with sourdough starter replacing the baking power