Spotlight: Chocolate Babka

"BABKA" : Mostly associated with the Eastern European Jewish tradition and known for its beautifully, double twisted braid and streusel topping is this week's spotlight. There are endless possibilities for innovative fillings, but my go-to will always be chocolate!

One of my favorite babka recipes that I have tried was featured in New York Times. This babka was very light and not too sweet (some receipes cause the chocolate filling and struesel to be overwhelming). With that said, I have saved you all the headache and pains of working through a new recipe by following the below tips: 

TIP 1: Make sure you fully read through the recipe several times before starting. This is true for any new recipe, but this one in particular has many steps that can be easily overlooked. From personal experience, I had to start a few steps over because I was moving too quickly :)

TIP 2: I like to measure out all the ingredients before starting (putting them in paper bowls also makes for easy cleanup). This allows to be able to group steps together while not having to run around the kitchen in a frantic making sure nothing burns! 

TIP 3: You might be tempted to make the filling and streusel the day before, but I had some set backs. The first streusel that I made used the amount of butter the recipe called for but was too much causing the streusel to clump into a ball in the fridge. I had to remake and slowly added butter until the streusel was a crumble consistency (I used about 3 tbsp instead of 4.5) I would also encourage to make the chocolate filling the same day as rolling out dough because it reaches the ideal consistency much faster. 

TIP 4: Depending on how warm your kitchen is, I would leave the rolled dough in the freezer (once filling has been applied) for a little longer than 10 mins. I would continue to check every 5 mins or so, but you want the filling to be hardened enough so that the filling stays in the creases to be distributed evenly. 

I hope these tips help inspire you to make your own delicious babka! Please feel free to share your success stories or any other helpful tips :)