The weather has been a bit colder in the days following Christmas and it’s just felt perfectly agreeable to make things, even after the cookie extravaganza of 2018 (I think I’ve been baking daily for like two weeks now!). This recipe is one I’ve used over the years for Swiss Sunday bread, Zopf, or Züpfe in some regions (or so I hear!).
I’ve had so many versions of this bread, and most made by Swiss family or friends. I’ve come across many with each their own version, so this is just one of many out there! The name literally translates to “braid” and when done correctly, the outer layer has the perfect crunch, and inside is soft and tender, almost melting in your mouth. It’s best eaten right out of the oven, though a little butter and jam will do the trick if you must wait til later. We love ours with jam; a nice slice of Emmentaler stuck inside a hunk is quite delicious too.
7 cups flour
1 tablespoon salt
3 cups milk, lukewarm
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons active dry yeast
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick)
1 egg + 1 yoke for brushing
Directions: Mix flour, salt, sugar and yeast together in a large bowl. Mix in lukewarm milk and then, butter. Knead into a soft dough; I spend about ten minutes kneading. Cover and let rise for one hour. After one hour, separate into two, each will make one braided loaf. Brush braided dough with water and let sit for an hour. After, set oven to 400 degrees and brush bread with yoke mixture. Bake for between 45-50 minutes on lower rack.
This never lasts long in our house, so get some slices while you can! Enjoy!