Blackberry Lemon Pull Apart Loaf
The mornings grow longer, coaxing us to start our days early. Bright rays poke through windows, slowly sweeping away the previous night’s waning darkness. The pungent tang of yeast bites at tired nostrils as busy hands work a dough into a ball. A towel is draped gently over the growing dough and time is left to do its thing.
Minutes pass by, the morning now brighter, and hands go back to work. This time they take a delicate approach, carefully rolling out, slicing, shaping, spreading, dusting and stacking. Layers of dough, lemony sugar and tart blackberry jam build in the heavy, old loaf pan. The towel is brought back and time is again the last man left working in the flour-dusted kitchen.
A wave of heat washes over a face as the pan is slid into the oven. Minutes are counted. Beautiful aromas float around the kitchen. Plates are stacked and forks found.
- 1 tablespoon active yeast
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 ounces raw honey
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest
- 2 eggs
- 1 pound 2 ounces (18 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 3 to 5 ounces whole wheat flour
- 6 ounces butter, at room temperature
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 ounces sugar
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 2 ounces blackberry jam
- Frosting Ingredients
- 2 ounces powdered sugar
- 2 to 4 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Heat the milk to 140°F over medium-low heat. Remove from the heat and allow the milk to cool to 110°F.
- This step is necessary to kill an enzyme in milk that can impede the yeast's ability otherwise.
- Once the milk has cooled to 110°F, pour the milk into the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl. Add the yeast and stir until the yeast has completely dissolved.
- Add the honey, lemon zest, eggs, all the all-purpose flour, 2 ounces of the whole wheat flour and butter. Mix until a dough begins to form.
- Add the salt. Knead the dough (on medium-low speed) for about 7 to 10 minutes. If the dough looks very sticky and does not pull away from the sides of the bowl, add a little of the remaining whole wheat flour. The dough should be tacky but not very sticky nor difficult to work with.
- Place the dough in a large bowl and cover with a towel. Let rise in a warm spot for about 2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in volume.
- Once doubled in volume, punch down the dough gently and knead it for a few seconds with your hands. Let rest for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, mix the 2 ounces sugar and the 1 tablespoon lemon zest together in a bowl. Set aside.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a long, thin rectangle, about 18x4".
- Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into small rectangles, each about 4x3".
- Working with one dough rectangle at a time, brush the top with a thin layer of blackberry jam. Sprinkle the sugar lemon mixture on top of the jam and place the dough rectangle in the loaf pan, standing it up. Repeat with each of the dough rectangles until you fill the pan, leaving the last dough slice unadorned with jam or lemon sugar.
- Cover the pan loosely with a towel. Let the dough rise until almost doubled in volume, about 30 to 45 minutes.
- In the mean time preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Once the dough is almost doubled in volume, place it in the preheated oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.
- In the meantime, mix the frosting together. Then pour the frosting over the top of the loaf.