We’re celebrating Christmas with our Wilton friends all over the globe! In our Christmas Around the World Series, a guest contributor will share their favorite Christmas recipe and story with you. Today’s story comes from Patricia Paredes in Paraguay.
For me, Christmas is finding oneself. It’s a time to reflect and a time to share with the family. Let’s share Christmas Eve with the best wishes of abundance and prosperity. We always get together to prepare our best recipes and the sweet bread is a dessert we cannot miss!
Sweet bread with chocolate chips
1Kg (2.2 pounds) all-purpose flour
200g (7 oz) butter
300g (10.5 oz) sugar
50g (1.7 oz) fresh yeast
250ml (8.4 oz) milk
Water (to mix with the yeast)
10cc. (2 tsp) Panettone essence
10cc. (2 tsp) vanilla extract
500g (1 pound) chocolate chips
Cut yeast into small pieces and mix with water. Add 1 teaspoon of sugar and 2 teaspoons of flour. Mix with a fork until it’s creamy. Cover the cup and let it rest until it doubles its size with foam.
Place flour in a bowl and make a well in the center. Add the yeast and mix.
In a separate bowl, mix sugar, eggs, melted butter and essences and add to the flour. Mix to form a ball. It will be sticky and soft.
Place the dough over a board covered with four. Add the chocolate chips and knit the dough until smooth and elastic and no longer sticky, adding flour as needed. Place it in a bowl with flour. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise. The time will depend on the temperature and conditions but it has to double in bulk.
Punch down the risen dough and turn out onto a board with oil. Roll the dough and divide in smaller portions and place in a muffin pan. Let it rise again.
Preheat the oven. Start baking at 165°C – 170°C (325°F – 340°F) until it rises to the border of the pan. Then increase the temperature to 180°C – 185°C (350°F – 365°F) and continue baking. When a knife comes out clean, then the bread is ready. You can decorate the cooled bread with melted chocolate and other holiday decorations.