Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Greek vs. Italian Egg Bread

Yes, those are are really eggs in the center of rolls here. The Italian version is the black and white photo, the other the Greek – Tsourakis. It has the traditional red eggs. From Southern Living Celebrations:

The children shout Christos Anesti then each, with a brightly dyed red egg in his hand, tries to crack the egg of his adversary. The child with the last unbroken egg is declared the winner.

So, how are these rolls eaten? Do you bite through the shell too? Do you take the egg out and peel? This seems very odd. Why not cook and dye eggs separately and sit them in rolls where a depression has been made in the center. And the directions for that braided loaf? Very elaborate recipe for no good reason, as far as I can tell. Anyone want to eat this one?

Easter Bread

1 c. scalded milk

1/2 c. sugar

1 tsp. salt

1/4 c. corn oil

1/4 c. warm water

1 pkg. dry yeast

2 eggs, well beaten

5 c. (about) sifted flour

9 uncooked sm. eggs in shell 1 egg white, beaten

1 c. light corn syrup (opt.) Mix the milk, sugar, salt and corn oil and cool to lukewarm. Pour the water into a warm mixing bowl. Sprinkle with yeast and stir until dissolved. Ad the milk mixture, beaten eggs and 3 cups flour gradually to make soft dough. Turn out onto floured board or cloth and knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl and turn to grease top. Cover. Let rise in a warm place, free from draft, for about 1 hour or until doubled in bulk. Punch down. Shape half the dough into 9 small rolls and place on a greased cookie sheet. Cover and let rest for 15 minutes. Make 1 1/2 inch cut in center of each roll and place 1 egg in each. Cover with a cloth. Shape remaining dough into a large round loaf and place on a greased cookie sheet. Cover. Let rolls and loaf rise for 30 - 45 minutes or until doubled in bulk. Brush with egg white. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes for rolls and 30 minutes for loaf. Bring corn syrup to a boil in a saucepan and brush on hot bread. Let set for several minutes before serving. Each half dough may be shaped into three 22-inch ropes, braided, shaped into circle and ends pinched together to fasten. Let rise and bake as directed for rolls.

I hope my Jewish readers enjoyed their Passover Monday night. For my Spring Holiday show I handed out chocolate matzah, and gave a recipe for flourless chocolate cake from a vintage cookbook:
Passover Chocolate Sponge Cake

6 (1-oz) squares semisweet chocolate

10 eggs, separated

¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

2 cups finely grated almonds

Melt chocolate in top of a double boiler; set aside. Beat egg yolks until thick and lemon colored. Gradually add sugar; beat well after each addition. Add chocolate and almonds; stir well. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold whites into batter. Spoon batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan. Bake at 350 F for 1 hour or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Remove from oven; invert pan, and cool about 40 minutes before removing from pan.


LemonyRenee' said...

Have you ever made a version of this? I have been totally intrigued with the idea that the eggs go in raw . . . but that rests on the assumption that they come out edible. Do they?

We have 4 hens that just started laying. I'm thinking I just may try something like this with their undyed brown and green eggs. (I don't know about the dye seeping into the bread so much, but I'm just weird like that.)

Again, wonderful, wonderful blog!

Sarah said...

My Flesichmann's Yeast cookbook has a recipe for this same thing-where the eggs are tucked into the dough before rising and then baked.
Pretty, but odd!