Easter Sunday is right around the corner and many of you are getting your meal plans for your celebrations ready. So I thought I would share a recipe that I came across in my little Czech cookery cookbook, it’s for traditional Easter buns. These little breads are baked on Good Friday and enjoyed as a Lenten lunch during the season. The breads or Jidasky are supposed to represent the rope of Judas……OK I tried to do some research on this to clarify it better for you but well, that’s pretty much what I came up with. The Czech Republic was under 42 years communist rule and during that time religion was highly discouraged and persecuted, the country became or was an atheist state. Till this day most of the people are non-religious, but over the past years there has been a rise on people beginning to practice different religions. The Czechs have very tolerant views towards religion, it isn’t something that comes up in conversation a lot or causes problems between people – it’s a non-issue. Being that I myself am not a religious person I find this to be a great and positive attitude to have towards people’s own personal beliefs. But regardless of religious or not people have kept up with traditions like this that have been handed down from generation to generation.
If you are interested in this little cookbook (see photo) I did find it on Amazon, CZECH COOKERYbut with out a picture of the book cover. I did a Google search and found this site in Canada that sells it. Alternatively if you are ever in CZ you can find it in any book store or tourist shop.
400 grams or 3 cups fine or medium grain flour
30 grams or 1 oz fresh yeast
40 grams or 1.41 oz Castor (super fine **not powdered* )sugar
250 ml or a little over 1 cup milk, lukewarm
pinch of salt
60 grams or 2 oz of butter
2 egg yolks (reserve the egg whites)
extra flour for rolling
butter or oil to grease the baking pan
1. Melt the butter and set aside to allow to come to room temperature. In a small bowl break up the fresh yeast then add half the sugar and about 100 ml or 1/2 cup of milk. Allow the yeast to rise, about 5 minutes.
2. Mix the remaining sugar into the remaining milk and set aside. In a separate bowl combine the salt and flour, make a well in the center. Once the yeast mixture is ready add it, the melted butter and remaining milk to the the flour. With a large wooden spoon start mixing the mixture until it comes together. You can begin kneading the mixture into a smooth dough for about 10 minutes (adding extra flour if needed). Cover and leave to rise until it has doubled in size, about an hour.
3. Preheat oven to 200c or 392f. On a floured surface knead the dough once again then cut into equal sized pieces/balls. Roll each piece/ball into long tubes and work into spiral or pinwheel shapes like in the photographs. Grease a baking pan, place the breads on the baking sheet and brush egg whites over each bread. Leave bread to rise for another 5 minutes. Bake until they are golden brown 10-15 minutes.
Allow to cool down before serving. Once you are ready to serve allow each person to dribble honey over them and serve with coffee or tea. This breads came out very moist and fluffy and very good, actually this recipe and taste reminds me a lot of my own dinner roll recipe , with a few differences.
Check out the Blood Orange Zest Version here : http://spiciefoodie.blogspot.com/2010/04/blood-orange-zest-rolls.html