How pretty is this Estonian Kringle?! So pretty. Now down to logistics. Here’s the deal. I used the original recipe from Just Love Cookin for this dough, but found it to be pretty dense and not as soft as I like. So I have the original recipe at the end of the post, but decided to post my go-to pull-apart loaf recipe because it’s so much more light and airy. It makes the same type of dough, so if you prefer a softer bread like me, use the recipe below; if you decide you want a denser bread that doesn’t rise as much but is still bread-y, go for the original recipe from Just Love Cookin.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 1 large loaf 1x
- Category: bread
- Method: baked
- Cuisine: estonian
for the dough
- 2 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 ounces unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup whole milk
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
for the filling
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
- 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted until browned
- In a large mixing bowl whisk together 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. Set aside.
- Whisk together eggs and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, melt together milk and butter until butter has just melted. Remove from the heat and add water and vanilla extract. Let mixture stand for a minute or two, or until the mixture registers 115 to 125°F.
- Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula. Add the eggs and stir the mixture until the eggs are incorporated into the batter. The eggs will feel soupy and it’ll seem like the dough and the eggs are never going to come together. Keep stirring. Add the remaining 3/4 cup of flour and stir with the spatula for about 2 minutes. The mixture will be sticky. That’s just right.
- Place the dough is a large, greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel. Place in a warm space and allow to rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour. The dough can be risen until doubled in size, then refrigerated overnight for use in the morning. If you’re using this method, just let the dough rest on the counter for 30 minutes before following the roll-out directions below.
- While the dough rises, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg for the filling. Set aside.
- Melt 2 ounces of butter until browned. Set aside.
- At this point, place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350°F.
- Deflate the risen dough and knead about 2 tablespoons of flour into the dough. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 5 minutes. On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out. The dough should be 12-inches tall and about 20-inches long. If you can’t get the dough to 20-inches long… that’s okay. Just roll it as large as the dough will go. Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter across all of the dough. Sprinkle with all of the sugar and cinnamon mixture. It might seem like a lot of sugar. Seriously? Just go for it.
- Roll the dough into a log so it stays 20-inches long. Using a large knife, cut the log in half length-wise. Braid the two halves together, keeping the inner dough layers exposed and the thickest outer layer facing the pan (confused? see the Just Love Cookin photo post, linked at the end of this recipe).
- Place the braid on a cookie sheet in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is very golden brown. The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw. A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes. Run a butter knife around the edges of the braid to loosen the bread. Serve warm on a plate or platter.
Keywords: intricate, fancy, delicious