Zopf/Treese/Treccia/Tarschola - Swiss Braided Bread
Like fried potatoes in Belgium, this Sunday morning braided bread might be the only food that truly unites Switzerland’s four diverse ethnic and linguistic groups: German, French, Italian, and Rumantsch Grischun, the language of Canton Graubuenden.
Recipe courtesy of Chef Reto Mathis
Makes one large braid, about 20 servings
9 ounces/270 grams whole milk
1 ounce/25 grams compressed yeast
2 teaspoons/10 grams sugar
3 ounces/80 grams unsalted butter, melted
2 extra-large eggs at room temperature
19 ounces/540 grams bread flour
1 1/2 teaspoons/10 grams salt
Egg wash: One egg well whisked with a pinch of salt
One rimmed baking sheet covered with parchment paper
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk the milk, yeast, and sugar together. Let stand 5 minutes, then whisk again.
- Whisk in the eggs and butter; use a large rubber spatula to stir in the flour. Sprinkle the salt on the surface of the dough.
- Place the bowl on the mixer fitted with the dough hook and mix on low/medium speed until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Remove the bowl from the mixer, cover, and allow the dough to ferment until double in bulk.
- Scrape the dough out on a lightly floured work surface and divide it into 3 or 4 pieces. Roll each to a cylindrical shape and braid them loosely. Place on the prepared pan and cover with a cloth. Let the braid proof until almost double in bulk.
- When the braid is almost proofed completely, set a rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.
- Uncover the braid and brush it with egg wash twice at a 5 minute interval.
- Bake the braid until well colored, well risen, and with an internal temperature of 200 degrees F.
- Cool on a rack and serve the day it’s baked with butter and jam.