How to make chocolate Easter bread
Make this soft and rich egg bread with Nutella and toasted hazelnuts to create a deliciously chocolatey and nutty treat this Easter! Don’t let its twisted pattern fool you, it might look complicated but it’s even easier than a standard braid.
Get all the tips for making egg bread, watch the video and get the recipe below.
Making the egg bread dough
What makes this chocolate loaf so special is the enriched egg bread. This dough has eggs, butter and milk added to it, which gives it a beautiful golden colour, small tender crumb and rich flavour.
To incorporate all the butter and eggs, a countertop mixer will make your job a lot easier. You can also make it by hand, but it will take longer and require a good amount of elbow grease to get the dough to pass the windowpane test.
What is the windowpane test?
This test makes sure that enough gluten has developed in the dough for the bread to rise and have a good texture. To do the windowpane test:
- Cut off a small ball of dough and flatten between your fingers.
- Gently pull and spread the dough apart.
- If kneaded enough, the dough will easily pull into a thin, translucent “windowpane” without tearing or breaking.
If the dough breaks before you can see through it, knead it a little longer before repeating the test.
Why you should use bread flour
This recipe calls for bread flour rather than standard plain flour. Bread flour contains more gluten, so it’s much easier to develop the gluten strands that give the bread its structure. It’s easy to find in supermarkets in the baking aisle. If you don’t have access to bread flour you can use plain flour.
What to do with cracking or sticky dough
Once kneaded, your dough should be soft, smooth and supple. If you find that your dough is cracking and crumbling, add a tablespoon of water or milk at a time and knead it in. Repeat until it reaches the correct consistency.
If your dough is very sticky and isn’t gathering into a cohesive ball, add a tablespoon of flour at a time and knead until the dough firms up.
One great thing about this egg bread dough is that it can be prepped ahead. Make it the day before your Easter gathering, then you can bake it and pull it fresh out of the oven to everyone’s delight. Follow the recipe up to step 5, then refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature and continue from step 6.
Cool dough is easier to work with
If you find that the dough is too soft an difficult to work with at room temperature, pop it in the fridge for 30 minutes to firm up.
How to store the cooked chocolate bread
Once the loaf has cooled, store in an airtight container or wrap in cling film. Refrigerate for up to 3 days. Warm slices in the microwave for 20 seconds or warm in a low oven for 15 minutes.
To freeze, wrap whole loaf well in cling film and freeze for one month. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
Choc Hazelnut Egg Bread recipe
EGG BREAD DOUGH
- 4 cups (600g) bread flour
- 2 tsp (7g) active dry yeast
- 2 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 60g cold butter, diced
- ½ cup (125ml) cold milk
- ½ cup (125ml) cold water
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten, 1 egg for glazing
CHOC HAZELNUT FILLING
- ½ cup (165g) chocolate hazelnut spread
- ⅓ cup (45g) toasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
EGG BREAD DOUGH
- Place 2 cups of the flour, yeast, sugar and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix at low speed for 30 seconds or until well combined
- Add butter, milk and water. Beat at low speed for 1-2 minutes or until butter has been completely incorporated. Remaining at low speed, gradually add beaten eggs a little at a time, mixing well between each addition. Increase speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. Mixture should now be glossy and sticky
- Remove paddle attachment and insert dough hook. Beat on low speed and slowly add remaining flour, ½ cup at a time, until it forms a firm dough
- Increase speed and knead for 5 minutes or until it forms a firm, smooth and elastic dough. Test using the windowpane method (see tips)
- Tip dough onto a lightly floured work surface and form into a ball. Place in an oiled bowl. Cover and allow to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size
CHOC HAZELNUT EGG BREAD BRAID
- Punch down dough and roll out to form a 30cm x 30cm square. Spread chocolate hazelnut spread onto dough leaving a 1cm border on all sides. Sprinkle over chopped hazelnuts
- Roll dough to form a log. Place onto a lined baking tray. With a sharp knife cut down the centre lengthwise, so that the two halves of dough are not completely separated but remain attached at one end
- Braid the two strands without tightening and try to keep the dough with the choc hazelnut facing up. Cover with cling film and place in warm place for 30 minutes
- Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C (fan-forced). Glaze braid with remaining beaten egg and bake 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Check at 15 minutes and if browning too fast, cover with foil. Cool on tray and serve warm or at room temperature
More Tips & Advice from Australian Eggs
The best fluffy pancake recipe
Get the fluffiest pancakes with this easy recipe and some top tips and tricks.
How to poach eggs easily
Three easy ways to poach eggs! Learn how to poach eggs using the whirlpool method, in a frypan and in the oven and how much time it takes to perfectly poach eggs. Plus get more tips about how to poach eggs without vinegar and lots of recipes with poached eggs.
The secret to fluffy pancakes
Learn how to make light and fluffy pancakes with this easy recipe and tips, including how to keep your pancakes warm as the others cook, plus unique recipes and pancake topping ideas.