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Tina's Proverbs 3:8 Tsoureki/Greek Easter Bread

Updated: May 27


Tinas Tsoureki Greek Easter Bread Recipe
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This bread is not only tantalizing to your tastebuds. It is nutritionally sound according to God's design and what He called good. Made with fresh milled flour, this bread will be "health to your flesh and strength to your bones." Proverbs 3:8




The exotic aroma of this bread during preparation is a small tease compared to while it is baking because it will fill your house, taking you on a journey, in your mind's senses, to the Middle East. So, get on board this recipe's cruise ship and enjoy the moment.


Makes 7-9 loaves, depending on size of loaf. If you see that the dough is too much for your mixer, if using, remove onto lightly oiled counter and hand knead for until you achieve successful windowpane test. See notes below.

Also, keep in mind when using fresh milled flour with store bought flour that the store-bought flour is much more dense than fresh milled, resulting in higher volume. Manage your measurements for recipes that you transform to include store-bought flour that call for only fresh milled flour. There will be a difference in results.


INGREDIENTS

6 cups warm water, 105 degrees, enough where you can put your finger in comfortably.

3/4 cups olive oil

1 1/2 cups honey, less is ok, add to measuring cup with the olive oil for easier dispensing

4 eggs

4 tablespoons yeast

4 tablespoons sunflower lecithin, an emulsifier which keeps dough fresher and soft

Fresh milled flour, 10 cups, I used mixed grains of Hard Red, Einkorn and Spelt. Feel free to use any one or mix of grains.

1 1/2 tablespoons vital wheat gluten, optional

2 tablespoons salt

7-10 cups King Arthur Organic Unbleached Bread Flour

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon orange extract

11/2 teaspoons mahlepi (mid-eastern spice of sour cherry pit). See blog, The Bread of Life; Regifting the Gift.


DIRECTIONS

  1. Add water to mixer, if using, add yeast and dissolve.

  2. Mix in the olive oil, honey, eggs, lecithin, the 10 cups of milled flour, just until mixed. Let sponge (soak) for 15 minutes.

  3. After 15 minutes add vital wheat gluten, if using, salt and as you continue mixing, slowly add the 7-10 cups King Arthur (store-bought) flour until the dough is pulling away from the sides of mixer bowl, which means there's enough flour. At this point, let the machine knead the dough for 5-7 minutes.

  4. Remove the dough and shape. To shape, I cut dough into 6 - 8 sections. Then I cut each section into 3 or 4 ropes about 12" long and braided them putting them into lightly loaf pans lightly sprayed with olive oil or on baking sheet with parchment paper.

  5. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until double in size. This should take less than 30 minutes.

  6. Lightly, so as not to punch down, brush with whole beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds or sliced almonds.

  7. Bake in 350-degree preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, until golden or until internal temp reaches 195-200 degrees.

  8. Remove from pan and allow to cool.

 

NOTES

A windowpane test is done by pinching off about a 2-3" ball of dough and stretching it with your fingers until it's almost translucent like a window, without breaking.

I mill my grains on fine mode and fresh milled flour is fluffy and not dense. Whereas storebought flour has been stripped of the bran and nutrients and packed heavy to be sold by weight. Also, it has been sitting on shelves or in warehouse for a certain amount of time where moisture and air can make heavier. Therefore, there is a difference when adding to a recipe.

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