BM# 51 — Baking Marathon: Day 12
Bake of the Day: Colomba Pasquale (Easter Dove Bread)
This month’s theme is Easter, Passover and Springtime breads from around the world. I made these cute little spring breads last week and wanted to try a more traditional Easter bread for the Bread Bakers group. Found this Colomba Pasquale or Easter Dove bread recipe on King Arthur website. The dove shaped bread looked lovely, so I decided to give it a try.
Colomba Pasquale is a traditional Easter bread made with flour, eggs, sugar, yeast and butter. It is fashioned into a dove shape (colomba in Italian) and then topped with pearl sugar and slivered almonds before baking. It is very similar to it’s Christmas counterpart, the Panettone. It is flavored with candied peel.
This KAF version of dove bread has dry fruit and orange rind/ zest in it. I think I followed the instructions to the T, but the shape of my dove is up for discussion. My husband thinks it looks like an squid, whereas I can clearly see a very very chubby bird. I’ve seen dove shaped baking pans online that one can use, but I guess it’s the thought that counts and also once the bread is sliced, who cares if it looked like a skinny or chubby dove 🙂
The dough is fairly high in fat and sugar, so it takes a little bit of time to come together and is equally slow during the rise. So be patient and give yourself extra time for rising if your house is cool.
I did not add eggs to the bread, instead used some egg replacer (flax seed goop can also be used). For the egg white wash, I used some soy milk and it worked just fine. I would have added at least ½cup of whole wheat flour to the dough, but with all the baking I have been doing, I ran out of whole wheat flour. All in all, the bread turned out soft, flaky and oh so flavorful with the addition of fiori di Sicilia extract (flowers of Sicily extract).
Recipe adapted from here:
[wpurp-searchable-recipe]Colomba Pasquale – Colomba Pasquale is a traditional Easter bread made with flour, eggs, sugar, yeast and butter. It is fashioned into a dove shape (colomba in Italian) and then topped with pearl sugar and slivered almonds before baking. It is very similar to it’s Christmas counterpart, the Panettone. It is flavored with candied peel. – Biga (Overnight Starter):: All purpose Flour, Cool Water, Instant Yeast, Dough:: All purpose Flour, Salt, Instant Yeast – (SAF Gold Instant yeast preferred), Sugar, Butter – at room temperature, large Eggs +egg yolk (reserve the white for the topping) — I used egg replacer whisked with 6tbsps water instead of the eggs and skipped the yolk apart altogether. For the egg white wash, I used 1tbsps soy milk., vanilla extract + ⅛orange oil, Grated peel of Orange, Dried fruit, chopped if large (I used dried apricots, cranberries and raisins), For the Topping:: Large Egg white, reserved from the dough, Almond Flour – blanched almonds, finely ground, Sugar, Sliced Almonds, Coarse White Sugar or Pearl Sugar or Demerera sugar, Make the Biga: The night before making the bread, mix together the biga ingredients, cover the bowl and set aside for up to 15 hours at room temperature.; To make the Dough: Biga will be quite bubbly in the morning. Combine the biga, flour, yeast, sugar, salt, butter, eggs (egg replacer mixture), fiori di sicilia and mix to combine. I had to add 2~3tbsp water to get the dough to come together. Knead the dough with the dough hook for 12 minutes, by this time dough will be soft and satiny.; Knead in the orange zest and dry fruit.; Cover and set the dough aside for 3 hours. By this time, dough will be very puffy.; Gently deflate the dough and divide into 2 pieces — one slightly bigger than the other.; Shape the pieces into 10″ and 7″ long logs. Taper the 10″ log on one side.; Place the longest log lengthwise on a parchment lined baking sheet; use the edge of the hand to form a crease in the center.; Lay the shorter log crosswise across it, right at the crease. Shape the shorter log into ‘wings’ by pulling it into a crescent shape. Flatten the tail and the wings, then using a sharp knife or scissors to snip ‘feathers’. Place a whole almond for an eye.; Cover with a lightly greased plastic wrap and let rise for about 2 hours. Don’t let it rise too much as the shape of the dove might get too distorted.; Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 375°F.; Prepare the Topping: Combine soymilk (or the reserved egg white), almond meal and sugar in a small bowl. This will be a thick glaze. Brush it on the dove liberally. Sprinkle the almonds and pearl/ coarse or demerera sugar on top.; Bake for 15 minutes. Then lower the oven temperature to 350°F and bake for 20 additional minutes. For the last 10 minutes, loosely tent the bread with an aluminum foil to prevent over-browning.; By the end of baking time, bread should be golden brown and the internal temperature should be 190°F on an instant read thermometer inserted into the center.; Gently move the bread onto a wire rack and cool completely before slicing.; [/wpurp-searchable-recipe]