Tuesday, October 14, 2014

September 2014 Daring Bakers' Challenge: Moravian Kolaches

I may be posting this challenge a little late, but it was too good not to share! The September Daring Bakers' Challenge was brought to us by Lucie from ChezLucie. She challenged us to make a true Czech treat-Kolaches!

I had never heard of Kolaches before this challenge, but they were delicious and reminded me a lot of danishes. In fact, I ate four of these before they even finished cooling from the oven! The dough was rich and buttery, and the pastries were perfect for either breakfast or dessert. The traditional filling given for this challenge was quark and plum jam. I substituted cream cheese and cherry preserves, and the combination was fabulous. This is definitely a recipe I will be making again soon!

Rolling out the Kolache dough.

Filling with cream cheese mixture.

Adding cherry preserves to center of pastry.

Bake and enjoy!

Moravian Kolaches with Cream Cheese and Cherry Filling
Makes about 30 small kolaches

3 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup confectioner's sugar
1 cup milk, warm
1/3 cup butter, melted
4 tsp (2 packets) active dry yeast
Pinch of salt
2 egg yolks

Cream cheese filling
2 cups cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
Confectioner's sugar to taste

To finish
2/3 cup cherry preserves (or preserves of your choice)
1 egg

1. In a small bowl, mix together the yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar. Add 1/4 cup warm milk. Mix ingredients well, and sprinkle 1 tablespoon flour on top. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for about 15 minutes.

2. In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, salt, egg yolks, butter, and milk. Add the yeast mixture and knead for about 15 minutes. (If you have an electric mixer with dough hook, you should be able to reduce kneading time to about 10 minutes). Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

3. Prepare cream cheese filling by beating together cream cheese, egg yolk, and sugar until smooth.

4. Preheat oven to 340 F. After dough has risen, roll in out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about 2 cm. Use a glass or a 4-inch cookie cutter to cut out circles of dough. Place a small spoonful of cream cheese filling in the center of each circle, and fold into a "purse" shape.

5. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, and place the kolaches onto baking sheet seam-side down. Make an indention on the top of each kolach, and place a small spoonful of cherry preserves into each indention. Brush pastries with egg wash.

6. Bake at 340 F for about 20 minutes. Kolaches will be golden brown when done. Best served warm or at room temperature, but can be stored for up to 5 days in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.

-Recipe adapted from challenge recipe available at http://thedaringkitchen.com/recipe/kolache.

-Posted by Jennifer

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