I’ve been watching a lot of Great British Baking Show lately and got inspired to try some different types of baking. My wife had mentioned wanting some cinnamon rolls the other day so I decided to try whipping up one of those star shaped loaves. It was actually much easier than I thought!
Since this was my first time attempting a star shaped loaf I wasn’t planning on making a post about this bread so I didn’t take any photos before I had shaped it.
- 4 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups warm water (around 110’F / 45’C)
- 1 Tbsp bakers yeast
- 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 egg
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-2 Tbsp water
Make the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment, proof the yeast with the water and sugar for about 5 minutes. Once the yeast is creamy, add the butter, salt and 2 cups of the flour. Mix on low until incorporated. Add an additional one cup of flour and mix for another minute. After that’s been mixed in, add the final cup of flour and let it knead for about 5 minutes. Cover the mixer bowl and let the dough rest and ferment for about 20 minutes or until roughly doubled.
While the dough is fermenting you can get the stuffing ingredients ready. First, get the oven pre-heating to 400’F with a pizza stone on the middle rack. Mix the cinnamon and sugar in a bowl and set aside. In another small bowl beat an egg (we’ll slather this on top of the bread before putting it in the oven). Finally, melt the 4 Tbsp of butter which we’ll use as glue for the cinnamon/sugar mixture. We’ll build the star loaf on some parchment paper for ease of transition into the oven, so get a piece ready.
Shaping the dough: Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and form into a ball. Using a bench scraper, divide the ball into three equal parts. Working with one portion of dough at a time, roll out into a 12-inch circle. Transfer dough circle to the parchment paper and brush with melted butter. Top with half of the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Roll out a second circle the same size as the first. Place it on top of the filling-covered circle. Repeat the process by adding butter and then the remaining half of the cinnamon-sugar. Top with the final dough circle.
Cutting / twisting the dough: With your stack of three dough pieces on the parchment paper, place a drinking glass or small bowl in the center. The glass should be roughly 3 inches in diameter. Make 16 equally spaced cuts in the dough surrounding the glass. It’s easy to start with four cuts, then make cuts in between each of those. Cut each of those into strips to the edge of the dough. Using both hands, take two adjacent strips and twist them outwards, revealing the layers inside. Pinch the ends of the strips together and tuck them under slightly. Repeat with all remaining dough strips to form 8 spokes on the star.
Remove the glass or bowl from the center of the dough and allow the loaf to rise for 20 minutes. Wash the loaf with the whisked egg just before putting it into the oven.
Bake on the preheated pizza stone at 400’F for 15 to 17 minutes, or until evenly browned.
If you’re going to glaze the bread, prepare the glaze by mixing the powdered sugar with water until it’s the desired consistency. After it’s formed a glaze thickness, add the 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract and mix until combined. Top the warm loaf and serve immediately.
Changes for next time
The next time I make this I’m going to play with adding some chopped nuts or adding some bourbon soaked raisins. The glaze was a little lacking so I’ll probably use whole milk instead of water to give it a little more flavor.