Poppy Seed Braid
- 4 Tablespoons (60 ml) warm water, 105°F-115°F (40°C-46°C)
- 1 package (1 Tablespoon) active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) milk
- 1/4 cup (56 g) unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) honey
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 2 1/4 cups (281 g) unbleached, all-purpose flour plus additional for final mixing and rolling dough
- 1 1/3 cups (320 g) Poppy Seed Filling (See Recipe)
- 1 large egg plus 2 Tablespoons (30 ml) milk for brushing braid
- To proof the yeast, combine warm water and yeast. Stir slowly to combine. Set aside for 5 minutes.
- Scald the milk in a small saucepan, then add the butter and honey; cool to 110°F to 115°F (43°C-46°C).
- Place the flour and salt into the Vitamix Dry Grains container and secure lid.
- Select Variable 1.
- Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 6.
- Blend until a hole forms in the center of the mixture, about 5 seconds.
- Select Variable 3.
- Turn machine on and remove the lid plug. Pour egg, yeast mixture, and milk mixture through the lid plug opening. Stop machine and replace the lid plug.
- Select High speed. Slowly turn the machine On and Off two times. Stop machine and remove lid.
- While the dough rests, lightly grease a large bowl with vegetable cooking spray or shortening.
- Use a wet nylon spatula to scrape the sides of the Vitamix container. Pull the dough away from the container sides and into the center of the mixture. Replace lid.
- Select High speed. Slowly turn machine On and Off five times.
- Add additional water, 1 Tablespoon at a time, only if dough seems exceptionally dry. Repeat process five times, scraping the sides of the container until the dough binds together into a soft, elastic mixture.
- To remove the dough from the container, turn the machine On and Off five times (to assist in lifting the dough up and away from the blades). Invert the container over the greased bowl and allow the dough to fall into the bowl. Turn the dough once to coat the entire surface; cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Transfer the dough to a floured work surface. Roll it into a large rectangle, turning and flouring often, about 9-inches x 15 inches (23 cm x 38 cm) in size.
- Cut the dough lengthwise into thirds, so that you have 3 strips 9-inches x 5-inches (23 cm x 13 cm) in size (a pizza cutter works well for this).
- Spread the center of each section with the Poppy Seed Filling (see recipe). Dampen both ends of each strip and also dampen one long side with warm water.
- Roll each third lengthwise so that the poppy seeds are rolled inside jelly roll style. Seal the wet edges and then seal both ends of the strands.
- Line up the three strands on a parchment paper lined baking sheet (seam sides down). Braid the 3 strands loosely so the dough has room to expand. Seal the ends with your fingers and some additional water and tuck the sealed portion under the braid so the strands won’t come apart during baking.
- Cover with a clean, dry kitchen towel and let rise for about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Brush braid surface with the egg and milk mixture. Bake in a heated 350°F (180°C) oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden brown and braid reaches an internal temperature of 190°F (88°C) when tested with an instant read thermometer.
- Cool on a wire rack 10 minutes, then very carefully slide from the pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
This recipe has been written for the Vitamix 5200 with Standard 64-ounce container. If you are using a different Vitamix machine or container size, you may need to make adjustments to the Variable Speed, processing time, and/or ingredient quantities.