Tarragon, lemon and ricotta braid

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The sun right now is absolutely amazing. It actually made me clean up my balcony and this is what I found. A surviver. Tarragon that has successfully made it through another winter.

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One of my favourite Easter cakes is tarragon potica, a traditional rolled cake that is similar to gubana or in the end, to babka. It’s usually filled with fresh cheese like ricotta or sour cream, sweetened and mixed with tarragon. I added some homegrown lemons that I was offered at Šibav vinery on my  weekend trip to Goriška Brda. And they were just like pictured: bright, juicy, full of flavour.

Ingredients:

  • 500 g wheat flour T400
  • 40 g honey*
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 30 g fresh yeast
  • 80 g softened butter
  • 1,8 – 2,2 dl warm milk*
  • 1 egg + 3 egg yolks
  • 2 Tbsp rum
  • peel of 1 organic lemon
  • egg yolk + 2 Tbsp of milk for brushing

filling:

  • 15 g finelly chopped tarragon
  • 2 Tbsp sugar (I used sucralose instead)
  • peel of 2 lemons
  • 1 small egg yolk
  • 3 Tbsp drained ricotta

* The original reipe has 60 g of sugar. The quantity of milk depends largley on the quality of the flour. Plus if using honey, you will need a bit less liquid. Add gradually!

Preparation:

  1. Mix fresh yeast, 50 ml warm milk and one tablespoon of honey. Let double in volume.
  2. In a big bowl combine the two flours and salt.
  3. In a seperate bowl mix softened butter using a hand mixer. Gradually add eggs, rum and lemon peel.
  4. Mix the rest of the milk and the rest of the honey so it dissolves evenly.
  5. Add yeast and egg mixture to the flours. Add milk gradually, not all at once. Mix with wooden spatula. When the ingredients start to combine, start kneading. Flour the working surface. It takes something like 8 – 10 mins for gluten to activate, so you’ll be probably kneading for about 10 mins. The dough should be firm and silky.
  6. Let rise. When doubled in volume, divide in three equal parts and knead once more. Make three rolls and roll them out lenghtwise. Than add some filling in the middle, close up and roll and braid. Let rise once again.
  7. Before baking, brush with mixture of egg yolk and two tablespoons of milk.
  8. Preheat oven at 200°c and place in a baking tray filled with water to create steam. Bake for 10 mins, than lover the temperature to 180°c and bake for another 15 – 20 mins.

One thought on “Tarragon, lemon and ricotta braid

  1. Pingback: Friends. Sun. Food. Wine. | lolita bopa

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