Easter Bread is a very old tradition in many countries. The tasty sweet bread dates back farther than anyone really knows. In some countries it is in the shape of a cross and eaten by married couples to symbolize the cross they bare together, much like the cross Jesus had to bare alone. In other countries it is shaped like a wreath which circular interlocking crosses stands for eternity. In Italy Easter Bread is shaped in what looks like a birds nest with an egg in it but that’s not what it represents. The braid represents the throned crown Jesus wore and the egg symbolizes his resurrection/rebirth. This sweet bread has stood the test of time as a delicious reminder of times long past to many people all over the world. Representing life, it’s ups and downs, promises made, and bonds between families. Easter bread reminds us all that life can be very hard, but there are also joyful times as well, the sprinkles of happiness here and there in life.
3 Cups White All-Purpose Flour (Easter bread is always made with white)
½ Cup Sugar
2 ¼ Teaspoons Quick Raise Yeast
2 Eggs (room temperature)
2 Tablespoons Salted Butter (room temperature)
2/3 Cup Milk (room temperature)
1 Teaspoon Water
5 Eggs (boiled and dyed)
2 Tablespoons Sprinkles
Step 1 – In a stand mixer mix all dry ingredients together and mix until well combined
Step 2 – Add in all wet ingredients and mix until well combined. Once all of the ingredients are mixed to knead for 8 minutes are until dough is elastic with no clumps.
Step 3 – Remove dough hook and form dough into ball. Place in large bowl and cover with warm damp cloth and let it raise for for 1 hour until it is doubled in size.
Step 4 – Once the dough has doubled in size punch it down and cut it into 10 pieces, roll them into balls and let them rest for 10 minutes.
Step 5 – Roll each piece into thick ropes, then take two ropes and twist them together and close them into a ring shape and place it on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.. Repeat this 4 more times. Once all of the rings are finished place a dyed egg in the middle of each one and cover them and let them raise for 45 minutes or until they have doubled in size.
Step 6 – While you wait for the dough to raise preheat the oven to 350° F/175°C.
Step 7 – When the dough rings are done raising mix the egg wash together and bush in on top of each one. While the egg wash is still sticky sprinkled on the sprinkles.
Step 8 – Place the rings in the oven and bake them 30 minutes or until golden brown. When they are finished baking take them out of the oven and let them cook to room temperature before serving.