Zopf is a typical Swiss plaited bread that is often eaten for breakfast on Sundays. It is made with a simple dough that contains mostly flour, together with yeast, milk and butter. After rising it is braided and covered with a cracked egg to give it a nice brown crust. There are different ways in which the Zopf can be braided. I use the method in which you make two strings and cross them so you have four ends to braid the dough. It’s is very easy to do and I’ll be explaining it further below, so you’ll be able to make your own Zopf for your Sunday breakfast!
Time: About 30min of preparation and about 3h to let the dough rise overall.
- 500g of flour (17.64oz)
- 20g of baker’s yeast (0.71oz)
- 3dl of milk (10fl.oz)
- 1 tsp. of sugar
- 1 ½ tsp. of salt
- 60g of butter (2.12oz)
- 1 egg
-Put 500g of flour in a bowl and mix 1 ½ tsp. of salt and 1tsp. of sugar into it.
-Add the 60g of softened butter and incorporate it well.
-Then dissolve the 10g of baker’s yeast in the 3dl of milk.
-Start adding the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix everything together gradually until you get a homogenous mass.
-If you want to get a smoother dough, it helps to knead it for about 5-10 minutes at this point after it has become homogenous. Afterwards form it into a ball and leave it covered for at least an hour somewhere warm to let the dough rise.
-Divide the dough into two and form each half into a long string. It should be too thin so as to not fall apart.
-Lay one of them on a clean surface, and then lay the other one in a right angle over it so that they cross in the middle. You can see how to do that and then braid the dough more clearly below in the pictures.
-Position yourself in front of the cross so that the horizontal string is the one on top and the vertical one the string underneath that touches the surface where they cross. Start by lifting the end closest to you (it should be from the lower string) and laying it across the middle where both strings cross and a bit on further on the right than then end of the string across from you. Then take the end of that string and also cross it over the middle towards you.
-Afterwards cross the end of string on the right over the middle a bit lower than the end of the string already on that side. Then pick up that end and cross it over the middle to the right side too. At this point, you should have one end of string on each side vertically and horizontally again.
-Repeat crossing the end of the strings in the same order as many times as you can. Then fold the ends over one another as well as you can so they end in a nice shape.
-Pick up the braided dough carefully and put it on a baking tray over a baking sheet.
-Let the dough rise for at least another hour now.
-Crack the egg into a cup, then use a brush to spread the egg onto the loaf twice.
-Let the dough rise for another hour.
-Preheat the oven to 200° C (392° F).
-Once the oven is at the right temperature, put the baking tray with the loaf into the oven for about 30 minutes. The crust should have gotten a nice brown tone like in the pictures when you get it out of the oven, but the folds should be lighter and a bit yellow.
If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to leave them in the comments below. And if you use this recipe, be sure to link me to a picture of the result somewhere on social media and tell me how it went! 🙂