Ingredients
Bread Dough
Bread flour (強力粉 / Kyōrikiko) 270g
Grits (or corn meal) (コーンミール / kōhn mīhru ) 30g
Yeast solution (酵母液 / Kōbo-eki) 170cc
(Adjust depending on the condition of the flour, humidity, etc.)
Salt (塩/ Shio) 1tsp
Jam (ジャム / Jamu) 2tsp
Butter (バター / Batāh) 20g

Dried fruit (ドライフルーツ / Dorai furūtsu) 1cup
(Use more if you prefer)
Nuts (ナッツ / Nattsu) 1/2 cup
(Whatever you like)
Jam (ジャム / Jamu) 2tbsp
(Whatever you like)
Egg (卵 / Tamago) 1
Cinnamon (シナモン / Shinamon) To taste

How to Make
(1) Mix the yeast solution well. Allow the butter to come up to room temperature.
(2) Combine the bread dough ingredients in a mixing bowl. Knead for 5 to 10 minutes until the dough is about as soft as your earlobe. If the dough becomes too stiff while kneading, it’s OK to add some of the yeast solution. When you finish kneading, form the dough into a round shape.
* If you use a baking machine for kneading, set it to knead for 5 minutes. Then knead for an additional 3 minutes by hand. If you use a food processor, knead for 1 minute.
(3) Let the dough rise to 2-3 times its original size. Do not let the surface become dry. At a room temperature of around 24℃ (75℉), the dough will require a few hours to rise. This is the first rising. If the dough begins to dry out, cover it with a damp cloth. A finger test will tell you when the first rising is finished. Put some flour on your index finger, plunge your finger into the middle of the dough and pull it out. If the hole you make does not close up, the dough is finished rising.
During winter, when room temperatures may be lower than 24℃ (75℉), the first rising could take up to 24 hours. During summer, with a room temperature of around 30℃ (86℉), the first rising could finish in as little as 2-3 hours. Managing the first rising at warmer temperatures, therefore, requires greater attention.
(4) Once the first rising is finished, cut the dough into 4 equal pieces. Use a rolling pin or something similar to shape each into a rectangle about 6 cm wide and 30 cm long. Spread a thin layer of jam on each, add a layer of dried fruit, and then sprinkle with cinnamon. Roll each rectangle into a 30 cm strand. Place the four strands next to each other at a 90°angle to your body. Braid the strands together.
xmasbread1

Braid the strands by placing ④ over ③, and ② over ①. Then put ① over ④. Think of this as “Right over left, right over left, left over right in the middle,” starting from the right side.

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Combine the ends and round off both ends of the braid. Set the bread dough aside for about 1 hour for the second rising. Crack the egg into a bowl and beat it.xmasubread4

(5) After the second rising, paint the top of the bread dough with the beaten egg. Bake for 21 minutes at 220℃.

Recipe Developed by:Kaoru Shibata

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