After a long long wait, I finally got around to making a Chocolate Babka! This rich, moist, soft brioche kind of bread with decadent chocolate swirls is a labor of love. And we just can’t get enough of it!

Chocolate Babka dessert Krantz Cake baking bread

The recipe for this Chocolate Babka is from the famous  Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem Cookbook. His glossy chocolate Krantz cakes are a delight to look at and there is nobody I know who would not want to reach out and greedily devour them! One look at them, and I knew I just wanted to make them right away.

Chocolate Babka dessert Krantz Cake baking bread

How to Make Chocolate Babka Bread

Overnight dough: 

  • Make the dough by combining flour, sugar, salt and yeast. Stir in eggs and water till it all comes together. I used a stand mixer, but you can do this by hand as well!
  • Start adding cubes of softened butter, a few at a time. Keep mixing till the dough is shiny, smooth and elastic.
  • Keep the dough in a greased bowl, covered with plastic wrap. This needs to set overnight in the fridge.

Filling: 

Mix melted chocolate, butter, icing sugar and cocoa powder. Note – you could also use a chocolate spread, like Nutella, for the filling.

Assembly: 

  • Take the dough out of the fridge and divide into 2. Roll each half into a rectangle, roughly 14’* 11*.
  • Spread the chocolate filling evenly on both the rectangles, leaving 2 cms border all around. Sprinkle with the chopped walnuts.
  • Roll the dough tightly into a log, starting from the long side. Cut the log lengthwise into 2. With the cut side facing up, pinch the ends of both sides together.
  • Start with the right side dough, take it over the left side dough, continue down the length, making a braid. Gently tuck in both the ends under themselves. Repeat with the second rectangle.
  • Line 2 8″* 4″ loaf pans with parchment paper. Place the 2 braids carefully with the cut sides showing on top. Cover the pans with damp tea towels and keep in a draft-free area for 1.5 – 2 hours.
  • Preheat your oven to 190C. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Sugar Syrup Topping: 

  • Bring the sugar and water to a boil. Take it off the heat and allow it to cool.
  • As soon as the bread comes out of the oven, brush each loaf liberally with the sugar syrup. Leave the bread in the pan till they are just warm. Take them out on a cooling rack to cool completely.

Quick Notes – This takes time, yes, but all good things take time. Don’t they? The end result is incredible and worth all the effort. My only problem was that I cut the recipe in half and made just one loaf..and in that process, used little less chocolate than I would have.  The minute I sliced this, I knew I should’ve doubled the recipe and made four loaves instead! It is that good!! Don’t skimp on the sugar syrup right at the end too..even if you think it will be too much sugar..because it’s perfectly sweetened and so deeply flavoured.

What Does Chocolate Babka Taste Like?

Rich brioche bread wrapped around swirls of dark, luscious chocolate. Babka is a buttery dense bread. With the addition of the chocolate, it is filled with gooey chocolatey swirls that add a great texture and sweetness to the loaf. Each bite is utterly divine! As Yotam Ottolenghi says “it is scrumptiously soft and sweet, like a cross between a rum baba and a Danish pastry”.

Chocolate Babka dessert Krantz Cake baking bread

Is Babka Supposed to Be Dry?

Think a cake and bread hybrid. The bread itself should not be crumbly or excessively dry. As it is enriched with eggs and butter, it is similar to brioche bread. The crumb is soft, moist and firm as opposed to a cake crumb which is spongy and tender. The chocolate filling is what then lends a moist, lushness to the bake and gives it that characteristic Babka texture.

How Long Does Chocolate Babka Last?

This lasts up to 48 hours at room temperature, wrapped in foil. You can also freeze it up to 2 weeks.

Though this recipe requires the dough to rest overnight, I do plan to try making it in all one day, in my next outing. I have a feeling it will still be a winner. Buttery,  chocolatey, absolutely scrumptious treat, you just can’t go wrong with. I hope you’ll give this ravishing Chocolate Babka Bread a go.

For more fun baking with chocolate, you might enjoy:

I’d love to hear from you! Please tag me on Instagram @tashasartisanfoods, using the hashtag #tashasartisanfoods. You can also FOLLOW ME on INSTAGRAMPINTEREST for more fabulous recipes!

Chocolate Babka

Buttery, delicious, chocolatey this decadent Chocolate Babka is a must make. Your family & guests will be forever grateful to you!
Servings: 2 loaves
Calories:
Author: Natasha Minocha

Ingredients

  • 530 gms All purpose flour
  • 100 gms Caster sugar/powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp Dried active yeast
  • 3 Eggs
  • 120 ml Water
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 150 gms Butter, cut into small cubes and softened The recipe asks for unsalted, but I used salted butter
  • Vegetable oil for greasing the bowl

Chocolate filling

  • 50 gms Cocoa powder
  • 30 gms icing sugar
  • 130 gms Dark chocolate 70%, melted
  • 120 gms Butter, melted The recipe asks for unsalted, but I used salted butter
  • 100 gms Walnuts, chopped

Syrup

  • 260 gms Sugar
  • 160 ml Water

Instructions

Dough

  • Place the flour, sugar, salt and yeast in a mixing bowl. Stir it all well. Add the eggs and water and mix it all well till the dough starts coming together. A stand mixer works the best for this recipe, though you can do this dough by hand too.
  • Now start adding the softened cubes of butter, a few at a time. Continue mixing till the dough is shiny, smooth and elastic.
  • Place the dough in a big bowl, greased with the vegetable oil, cover tightly with plastic wrap and leave it in the fridge overnight.

Filling

  • Mix together the melted chocolate, butter, icing sugar and cocoa powder.
  • Take the dough out of the refrigerator, divide into 2. Roll each half into a rectangle 14'* 11* roughly. Spread the chocolate filling evenly on both the rectangles, leaving 2 cms border all around. Sprinkle with the chopped walnuts.
  • Roll the dough tightly into a log, starting from the long side. Cut the log lengthwise into 2. With cut side facing up, pinch the ends of both sides together.
  • Start with the right side dough, take it over the left side dough, continue down the length, making a braid. Gently tuck in both the ends under themselves. Repeat with the second rectangle.
  • Line 2 8"* 4" loaf pans with parchment paper. Place the 2 braids carefully with the cut sides showing on top. Cover the pans with damp tea towels and keep in a draft free area for 1.5 - 2 hours.
  • Preheat your oven to 190C. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

Syrup

  • Bring the sugar and water to a boil. Take it off the heat and allow it to cool.
  • As soon as the breads come out of the oven, brush each loaf liberally with the sugar syrup. Leave the breads in the pan till they are just warm. Take them out on a cooling rack to cool completely. We preferred to tear into the loaf while it was still warm! Enjoy!

Notes

NOTES:
If you want to cut down on some of the effort, you can use Nutella for filling.

Chocolate Babka dessert baking bread Krantz cake