There is a very traditional sweet bread/cake in Lebanon that used to be sold in the streets of Beirut by cart vendors; this cake is called sfoof and has a very distinct bright yellow color due to turmeric in the batter.
Apparently, turmeric is a very beneficial spice and I had been looking for ways to incorporate it in my cooking more often.
This brioche replicates the flavors of a traditional sfoof cake: Turmeric, anise; in addition, it contains mahlab, a common spice for baked goods, orange blossom water, and some pistachios for a garnish.
If you like braiding hair, you can braid these rolls and have fun with it. Divide the dough into small balls, stretch them into ropes and braid away.
Recipe contains three types of milk: Fresh milk, powdered milk and sweetened condensed milk.
To read up on turmeric, click here.
This brioche recipe comes from Saveurs et Gourmandises, Nadji’s blog. I added the spices.
- 500 g. or 2 cups (16 ounces) of unbleached flour
- 2 Large eggs
- 100 g. of sweetened condensed milk (3.5 ounces)
- 100 g. of powdered milk (3.5 ounces)
- 200 to 250 ml. of fresh milk (2 cups)
- 1 Tablespoon of instant dry yeast
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 100 g. of unsalted butter (7 tablespoons) at room temperature
- 1 Tablespoon anise seeds
- 2 Tablespoons of orange blossom water
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons of turmeric
- 1 teaspoon of mahlab
- Proof the yeast in 1/2 cup of warm milk.
- Mix flour, salt, powdered milk, mahlab, turmeric, anise seeds until combined.
- Mix eggs with condensed milk; add proofed yeast to the mixture. Add the flour and mix, then add the milk. Batter will be very sticky and wet. Keep mixing for 15 minutes or until the batter leaves the sides of the bowl. Add the orange blossom water.
- Add the butter in small chunks until it is absorbed into the batter. Let the dough rest, covered, in a warm place, till it doubles in size.
- Press all the gases out and cut into small rounds; cover and let rise. Shape the rounds into ropes and braid and twirl to from a snake. Brush a beaten yolk on the surface and add some chopped pistachios to the rolls.
- Bake in a 350F oven for 15 minutes or until golden and dry. Cool and serve.