Friday, 16 November 2012

Apple Cinnamon Chocolate Braid

Would you believe I've never made my own bread? Well, apart from banana bread and beer bread but they're not proper bread of the yeasted variety. I don't know why but I have this (irrational) fear of baking bread.  As you know I love entering blogging challenges and I realised I could enter quite a few challenges this month if I conquered my fear.

So I had a little think and initially thought of making a variation on a cinnamon roll but when I was browsing through pinterest I came across this apple braid by eat, live, run. As I'd already decided I would rise to the challenge of baking bread, I figured it wasn't too much more of a leap to start with a complicated looking one like this!! It was not too difficult in the end and I didn't end up crying over it - phew! Instead I did a little happy dance and couldn't wait to eat it as soon as it came out of the oven as it smelt so good baking. The bread was absolutely delicious! I loved the combination of apples, cinnamon and chocolate and the dough was surprisingly light (I was worried that I'd overworked the dough). Definitely best eaten warm but still good the next day.

So on to the challenges.  Calendar Cakes hosted by Laura from Laura Loves Cake and Rachel from Dolly Bakes chose bread, rolls and buns as Nov 17th is Homemade Bread Day. 

We Should Cocoa created by Choclette from Chocolate Log Blog and Chele from Chocolate Teapot which is guest hosted this month by Nazima from Franglaiskitchen chose bread or yeasted sweet dough bakes which have to include the compulsory ingredient chocolate. 

I'm also entering this to the Breakfast Club created by Helen from Fuss Free Flavours and guest hosted this month by Choclette from Chocolate Log Blog. The theme of course is chocolate!

As apples are in season, I'm also entering this to Simple and in Season hosted by Ren from Fabulicious Food.

Last but not least, I am also entering this to Made with Love Mondays hosted by Javelin Warrior where the idea is to cook everything from scratch .

And to another challenge that Javelin Warrior told me about called Bake Your Own Bread hosted by Heather from girlichef and Connie from My Discovery of Bread.

 you'll need bread flour, sugar, cinnamon, yeast, apples, lemon juice and chocolate chips 

 apples with cinnamon, sugar and lemon juice 

 roll out dough into a rectangle shape 

 cut strips on both sides, leaving the centre of the dough uncut 

 place your filling - apples, cinnamon and chocolate in this case in the middle 

 start braiding from one end to the other 

 the finished product - it's going to be a giant bread! As there was a lot of apple/cinnamon/lemon juice left which I didn't want to waste ...

 .. I decided to brush it over the whole bread

 which leaked slightly but not too badly and it gave it a nice brown top after baking 

 best served warm. Vanilla ice cream essential optional. 

Recipe adapted from Eat, Live, Run 

For the Apple Filling
3 medium-sized apples
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons lemon juice
100g chocolate chips

For the bread
350g  bread flour
50g caster sugar
1 tablespoon instant yeast
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup warm water
2 1/4 teaspoons vegetable oil

You can also make a glaze for the bread but I decided not to.
  • Preheat the oven to 180C.
  • To make the apple filling, peel, core, and slice the apples into thin slices, then cut the slices in half. 
  • Toss the apple pieces with the sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice. 
  • Bake the apple filling in small tin for 15 minutes. 
  • Remove from the oven and set aside. 
  • Once it's cooled completely, stir in the chocolate chips - the chocolate will melt if you add it in too early! 
  • (Note: Do not turn the oven off at this point. You will be using it to bake the finished braid.)
  • To make the bread, mix the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. 
  • Add the water and oil and mix the dough for 6 minutes using an electric mixer on medium-high speed.
  • (The flour amount I've included here is more than suggested as I found my dough was still very wet - you may need to adjust this youself)
  • Spray a smooth clean surface with cooking spray and turn the dough out onto the surface. 
  • Knead the dough briefly to give it a smooth surface 
  • Spray a rolling pin with cooking spray and roll the dough out into a large rectangle, about 12-inches by 16-inches in size. 
  • Lift onto a greased baking sheet.
  • Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, cut each side into strips about 1-inch wide down each side, leaving the center third of the dough uncut. 
  • Spread the apple filling down the middle third of the dough. 
  • Fold strips of dough into the center, crisscrossing the filling by alternating strips from each side. 
  • Lightly press ends to seal, and straighten out the braid with your hands, if necessary, to straighten.
  • Bake the braid in the oven for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let the braid cool for several minutes.


  1. Mmm, looks delish. I love the sound of apples in this - I bet it was great! :)

    1. It was really tasty especially when it was warm from the oven.

  2. what an absolute thing of beauty... love the filling, love the braiding... it's all just wonderful... now, about you never having made bread.... we NEED to sort this out my dear!

    1. I need some lessons from the master bread baker ie you :) the filling was amazing. I'm sure the braiding could have been better but I'm proud of myself :)

  3. What a tasty looking loaf and I love your plaiting!! What a yummy filling too. Thanks for entering Calendar Cakes this month :-)

    1. Thanks! I was quite pleased with how it turned out :)

  4. I have never thought of chocolate going well with apple and cinnamon before but this looks completely delicious and sounds amazing! I am impressed with how huge it was! and the thought of eating a piece of that with a huge chunk of vanilla ice cream is literally making my mouth water! what a perfect 'fall' bake!

    1. I was quite impressed with the chocolate - added to the flavour without overpowering it. I was surprised at how huge the bread turned out too!

  5. Your braid turned out so nice. I would have never thought of adding chocolate to an apple and cinnamon braid, sounds so yummy.

  6. Delicious looking loaf & awesome filling with chocolate. I must try apple & chocolate combo sometime. Sounds heavenly YUM! Have a nice weekend , Ros! :)

    1. Apple and chocolate is definitely a good combination. So glad I tried it :)

  7. Well you don't do things by halves do you! I've made plenty of loaves of bread but never have I attempted a filled braided loaf. Outstanding! Well done ;0)

    1. Lol no clearly I don't! I'm so relieved and pleased that it turned out well :)

  8. It looks so neat and pretty!

    Hope you're having fun on your travels

  9. Oh well done Ros for conquering your fear and baking your first ever yeasted loaf. It looks very impressive and sounds absolutely delicious. Thanks for entering it into WSC and Breakfast Club :)

    1. Thanks! I'm glad I did as it was delicious and not as difficult as I thought. The addition of chocolate was of course for WSC and breakfast club which really added flavour so thanks for that :)

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  11. I'm so glad you were able to share this with Made with Love Mondays, Ros! It sounds so tasty and I love that you took the time to bake your own bread! If you haven't already, you might consider sharing this with Girlichef's Bake Your Own Bread challenge as well...

    1. It's my first time making proper bread so I was pleased it was not a disaster! Thanks for letting my know about Girlichef, I've linked up too!

  12. This sounds wonderful Roz, and well done on doing such a complicated looking loaf for your first loaf. Amazing

  13. Great recipe Ros, thank you for entering it into Simple and in Season - the round up is now live x

    1. Thanks! Lovely selection of entries as always :)


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