Walnut chocolate star bread is a eye-catching yet easy treat that will definitely make you look like a baking star!
While this gloomy weather continues, I’ll be sharing a new comfort recipe with you guys! All I want during these cold days is some sweet bread, but not just any sweet bread. I want one with nuts and chocolate – my favorite!
The idea for this walnut chocolate star bread recipe actually came from making a traditional Slovenian potica. If you’ve been following me for a while, you know my son’s allergic to eggs and he’s a kid and loves chocolate. That’s why I created this super soft and fluffy egg-free dough with a the most delicious lemony flavor. And I added some yummy chocolate to the traditional walnut filling. I baked this first during Easter and we all loved it, so I had to share it with you.
Since I never made star bread before, I decided to make it a little mor einteresting than the traditional roll. In fact, you can roll it however you like, but take into consideration that you might need to adjust the baking time if you change it’s shape.
Also, when it comes to the filling. I tested it with hazelnuts as well and it is just as delicios. Think nutella! The reason why I included wallnuts in this recipe is the traditional aspact of this dish, but basically you can try other nuts too 🙂
So, how do you make the walnut chocolate star bread?
The dough recipe is super easy. It consists of standard ingredients like flour, yeast, sugar, vanilla, lemon zest, butter and milk.
For the filling you need finelly grated walnuts (or some other nuts), sugar (a part can be replaced with honey), heavy cream, butter and chocolate.
To create the beautiful star shape you need to divide the dough into three equal parts and roll each one to 26 cm (10 inch) diameter.
Cover two layers with the filling in a thin layer and not all the way to the edge. Cover with the top dough layer that’s not covered in filling.
Place a small glas or cup in the center and cut the dough radially into 16 identical strips like shown in the photo below.
Then take two strips by the ends, twist twice in the opposite directions and pinch the ends together quite firmly.
Here are some ideas to customize this chocolate star bread recipe:
- swap walnuts for hazelnuts or pecans
- swap lemon zest with orange zest
- add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the filling
- add 1/4 cup cranberries that have been soaked in warm water (or better – rum) for 10 minutes
- swap dark chocolate with milk chocolate or nutella
Walnut Chocolate Star Bread
- 2.5 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup + 2 TBSP milk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tsp dry yeast
- 1 tsp vanilla seeds or vanilla extract
- 2 TBSP unsalted butter melted
Walnut Chocolate Filling
- 1 cup finely ground walnuts
- 35 g dark chocolate
- 35 g milk chocolate
- 2 TBSP unsalted butter
- 2 TBSP sugar
- 3 TBSP heavy cream
- 1 TBSP milk or 1 egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water (for egg wash)
In a small bowl mix 2 TBSP sugar, half of the milk and yeast. Cover and wait for it to activate and start foaming.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine the flour, vanilla seeds (or extract) and sugar at low speed to combine all the ingredients. Add the rest of the milk and melted butter and mix until the dough comes together. Lastly, add activated yeast. Continue mixing until a soft smooth dough forms. You can do this by hand, as well. Transfer the dough to a greased bowl, cover, and let it rise at room temperature for 60 minutes or until double the size.
While the dough is rising, you can prepare the walnut chocolate filling. Melt butter and chocolate in heat proof bowl over the top of the saucepan with simmering water.
Add sugar to the butter and chocolate mixture and stir well.
In a small saucepan, bring heavy cream to a simmer (not to a boil!) and pour over ground walnuts. Add butter and chocolate mix to the walnuts and mix to get a uniform filling. Let cool to a room temperature.
Making the Walnut Chocolate Star Bread
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°C).
On a clean and lightly floured working surface, divide the dough into three equal parts and shape into spheres. Roll each of them out on a piece of baking paper into roughly 26cm (10inch) circles.
Leaving the baking paper below, cover one layer with half of the filling leaving a cm (1/2inch) room at the edge. Cover with the second layer and add the rest of the filling. Cover with the last layer. Place a small glass or bowl in the center and cut 16 equally-sized slices, leaving the center connected. Twist the slices in pairs away from each other. Then pinch the ends of each pair together. Set the star aside to rise for 40 minutes at room temperature.
Lightly brush the star with milk (or egg wash). Bake in the oven until deeply golden and puffy, about 20 to 25 minutes.