Friday, 2 November 2012

Tear and share walnut bread - Aranygaluska

Aranygaluska if translated literally means golden nuggets. Sweet, almost doughnut rich yeasty dough nuggets layered with sweet ground walnuts and melted butter. It's a course in itself all year round, except I made this one with star cookie cutters, so it's fit for the Christmas table. If you are making it for other occasions, just use an ordinary round or moon shaped cutter. Traditionally it's baked in a round tin and you are not meant to cut it but eat it in a tear and share style, dunking it into warm custard while it's still warm out of the oven. 

For the dough:
500g plain flour
25g fresh yeast or packet of dried yeast 
3 egg yolks
250ml warm milk
50g melted butter
50g icing sugar
pinch of salt

For the walnut filling:
Grind 200g walnuts to a coarse breadcrumb texture in a food processor. Mix it with 5 tbsp icing sugar. Prepare 100g butter.
Make a starter dough by mixing 100ml warm milk, crumbled yeast, teaspoon of icing sugar and 3 tbsp flour. Put in a warm place so the yeast can activate (if using dried yeast, you can leave this stage out and mix all ingredients in one go). After about 15-20 minutes the starter dough should be ready to mix with the other ingredients, adding the melted butter last. Work this dough until smooth and silky and air bubbles start to form while mixing, either with a dough hook in a mixer or by hand with a wooden spoon. Cover and leave in a warm place to prove and double in size, for about an hour.
Take the dough and knead it on a floured surface then roll it out to about 1cm thickness.  
Grease a 26cm loose bottom cake tin. Melt the 100g butter and have it ready in a bowl next to the sugary ground walnut. Start cutting stars out of the dough with the cookie cutter, dip each one into the melted butter then coat with the walnut mix. Place them into the tin snugly next to each other, creating 3 layers of nuggets by the time you used all the dough. Sprinkle the leftover walnut mix on top if there is any. If you don't want to dip every single nugget, then you can just brush each layer with the melted butter and sprinkle with the walnut mix. Preheat oven to 180C and let the cake rest and prove until the oven warms up. Bake for about 40-50 minutes or until it's cooked through. Take the side off the cake tin and serve it warm on the tin base.

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