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Blackberry Fest Bread of Elma Washington


Blackberry Fest Bread - Proposed Official Dessert of Elma Washington

Naomi and her handmade braided sweet bread
 As some of you may know by now, my home town is Elma Washington. I have lived all over the world - Geneva, Paris, New York, Mexico City - but little Elma Washington is my home town. So in honor of my hometown I created a new traditional treat for the Elma Summer Festival held in Elma Washington every August. 

I remember when Elma had its Slug Festival. Then it was changed to the Blackberry Festival, and now it looks like that has been changed to the Outlaw Festival. After careful thought, I realized that both 'slugs'and √≥utlaws' are not good for the image of poor little Elma. Slugs are disgusting, and we certainly do not want to glorify criminals or outlaws. 

I decided to make my own contribution to Elma Washington by inventing a special pastry to be served during their yearly late summer festival. I am going to ask the City of Elma to consider making this dessert the Official Dessert of Elma Washington.  I would like to introduce you to Blackberry Fest Bread. This is a dessert that I invented myself.  If it is made perfectly, it is a delicious and attractive recipe that people will love both looking at....and eating. 


Bread Recipe
1 cup milk
1/3 cup splenda or sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 package of active dry yeast
4 cups all-purpose flour (you can use multi-grain flour too)
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Directions

Over medium heat combine milk, sugar/splenda, sugar and butter. Heat until slightly warm then remove from heat and stir in the yeast. Wait for the yeast to become foamy and bubbly. 

In a large bowl stir in the flour and salt. Mix in the oil, eggs, and your milkly yeast mixture. Mix this warm dough until it pulls away from the side of the bowl. Roll it up into a ball, cover the bowl with a warm cloth and let it sit for about sixty minutes. The mixture will double in size.

Divide the bread into individual balls. Then take each ball and roll it out into three long pieces of equal length. Attach them at the base and start braiding. After braiding the bread, connect the ends until you make a braided circle. This will take some practice. 
Here I braided it with Eight pieces, but you can do it with only three.

The Filling
The night before you should have prepared your filling. 
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar, divided
  • (you can cut the calories and substitute the sugar for: 1 cup granulated splenda sweetner, or .75 cup splenda sugar blend,)
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch or liquid pectin
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice concentrate
  • 4 cups fresh blackberries, rinsed and drained

The day you serve your Blackberry Fest Bread, put your braids onto a greased cookie sheet. 

The Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
4 teaspoons orange juice

Mix together 1 cup powdered sugar with four tablespoons orange juice. It should look like a lovely orangey glaze. 

Bake It!

Baste your bread with this glaze then put it into an oven preheated to 350 degrees.

When your bread is golden brown, pull it out of the oven and sprinkle it with granulated sugar. You can glaze it again and sugar it again if you like. 

When the bread is done and cooled a little, spoon in your filling. The filling is best served warm. Top it off with whipped cream and more blackberries. Do not forget the final touch which is a drizzle of blackberry syrup. I did not have any blackberry syrup on hand when I made my fest bread featured in the image below. Instead, I would like you to close your eyes and imaging what it looks like. 

Blackberry Fest Bread of Elma Washington


Making the filling


My son loved his Blackberry Fest Bread


A dessert that is both sweet and tangy




Final Thoughts on this dessert.

One: it is time consuming to make. Everything must be made by hand.

Two: I have never seen anything else quite like this, so I think it would make a perfect traditional dessert for my hometown of Elma Washington. This would give Elma a lovely touch of charm and  small town intrigue. This treat is best served warm. What I like most about it, is that it is a beautiful looking dessert. 
Thanks for reading this blog! I hope to hear from the City of Elma shortly!
XXX OOO
Naomi

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