Lately it’s been a bit difficult finding the time to edit pictures and blog. For some reason, it seems as though time always seems to speed up at this point of the year. With the Christmas markets in full swing here, my nights and sometimes my afternoon are spent meeting up with friends and chatting over a Glühwein (mulled wine) and a delicious Flammlachs (grilled salmon sandwich). Since it’s our last year here, I’m making the most of the holiday cheer that is the christmas markets – even if it is a bit over the top! Last weekend, the hubby and I threw a Christmas party which took me the better part of the previous week to prep for. It turned out to be the most fun I’ve had a in a long while, so it was well worth it! On top of all that, I’ve been trying out new German cookie recipes and trying to find time to knit some last minute presents! It’s definitely a whirlwind around here!
This month feels like it’s flying by already, but I realized that it also means that the end of the year is coming up. After I did an internship at a local bakery, I’ve barely had any time to make some of my own bread, which makes me quite sad. So before the year comes to an end and I forget all I’ve learnt, I managed to find a bit of time to make this amazing couronne that I’ve very excited to share with you all. I decided to mix up the flavors a bit and think that they are very fitting for this time of year.
It would be just perfect at tea time with a nice cup of tea. Or better yet, perfect for a pre-breakfast on Christmas day while opening presents. I’m really looking forward to making this again for the family in a couple weeks.
Pistachio and Cranberry Couronne
- 2 cups (250 g) all purpose flour
- scant 3/4 tsp (4 g) salt
- 2 1/4 tsp (7 g) instant yeast
- 3 tbsp (50 g) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (105 ml) milk
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1/3 cup (80 g) butter, softened
- 1/3 cup (70 g) light brown sugar
- 1 cup (120g) cranberries, soaked in a bit of fresh orange juice
- 2/3 cup (65 g) pistachios
- zest of 1 orange
- 1/4 cup (35g) plain flour
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1 1/2 tbsp (30 g) honey
- 3/4 cup (100 g) icing sugar
- 1/3 cup (30 g) flaked almonds
First get started with the dough. In a large bowl, add all of the ingredients. With your hands, mix to combine everything together. Continue mixing until all the bits of flour are incorporated, the bowl is clean and dough is nice and soft.
Next, tip the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead for about 12 minutes. The dough will be really wet to start with and then will slowly become more and more smooth and easier to work with. Once the dough is smooth and silky you’re finished. Place it in a oiled bowl and cover with a tea towel. Leave it in a warm place to rise for about an hour until the dough has doubled in size.
Meanwhile, make the filling. In a small bowl, combine the butter and brown sugar with wooden spoon. Mix until smooth. Add in the cranberries (drained), pistachios, orange zest, flour and ginger. Mix till combined and set aside.
After the dough has risen, tip it out onto a lightly floured surface. Being careful not to knock out all of the air, roll gently into a rectangle (about 13×10 inches). Spread the fruit and nut filling over surface making sure to go all the way to the edges. Then, with the long edge facing you, begin to roll the dough up tightly. With a sharp knife, slice the roll lengthways all the way through. You are now left with 2 halves. Starting at one end, twist the dough over itself to make it one long rope. Join the edges to make a circle and tuck the ends under. Place the whole thing on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Wrap the baking tray with a large plastic bag (preferably clear so you can see whats going on) and be sure to tent it and leave enough room for the dough to rise. Leave it to prove for 30-40 minutes. Turn on the oven to 200°C/400°F.
Once risen, remove the plastic bag and place into the oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes all is golden brown. Cool on a baking rack. With a pastry brush, gently brush the whole surface with the honey.
While the couronne is cooling, make the topping. Mix the icing sugar with a couple teaspoons of water so it is runny enough to drizzle. Drizzle zig zags over the whole loaf and then top with the sliced almonds. Let cool before serving.