Life twists and sourdough cinnamon and chocolate twist bread

There were some sunny Christmas days spent in the mountains and there was a car crash couple of days later. I was overlooked and there was nothing I could do. I was in shock and I wasn't in shock. I was angry. The moment of collision was long and it was short. I didn't know if I would make it. I did. It hurt and it still hurts. Not much will for baking, but time for recovery and thinking. I don't know if I can call this being lucky, but in that moment of crash and not knowing, I felt how it's like having regrets of not living fully. Because, when you make some steps towards that side, you are alone with yourself. And regrets hurt the most.

So, when life gives you twists, you make a twist bread, right?


" Life has many twists and turns and sometimes what looks like a very bad day can be just clearing the way for good things to come. "


Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

Sourdough cinnamon and chocolate twist bread
Yields: one twist bread baked in dutch oven (you can also use any other round pan)

Baking schedule:
The dough for this bread was prepared in the morning, left to rise until almost doubled in volume, shaped, and left to rise until passing the poking test. It was baked in a same day.

Ingredients:

Starter
100 g water
100 g white wheat flour (bread flour)
1 tablespoon of your (active) sourdough starter

Dough
all of the above starter (appr. 200 g)
180 g warm milk*
370 g white wheat flour (bread flour)
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons of melted butter
1 tablespoon of sugar
6 g salt

Filling
100 g soft butter
60 g sugar (I used brown sugar)
2 teaspoons of cinnamon
50 g of grated chocolate (I used 70% cocoa chocolate)

* Please adjust the liquid content to your flour. If your flour absorbs more liquid, feel free to add more liquid during mixing. The dough for this bread is soft and not so sticky, but not runny (see photos below).

Instructions

Sourdough starter

1. In the evening, first prepare your sourdough starter. Mix 100 g of white wheat flour, 100 g of water, and 1 tablespoon or your base starter. Leave it to ferment until risen, puffed, active and bubbly, so you will be able to mix it into the dough next morning.

Dough

2. In the morning, mix the dough. First, dissolve all of your starter in 180 g of water. Add egg yolk and melted butter. Next, add all of the flour (370 g), salt and sugar. Mix well, and knead the dough for 10 minutes until smooth. Shape it into ball and place it into a bowl. Cover with a plastic wrap and leave to ferment until doubled in volume (right photo below). My dough needed 3.5 hours, yours might take more or less, depending on the temperature of your kitchen and power of your starter.

3. When you see the dough is about to be ready, prepare the filling. Mix softened butter, sugar, cinnamon and grated chocolate.
Also, take your dutch oven (or any other pan) and line it with a piece of parchement paper and grease it with butter.

Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

Shaping

4. Roll the dough to be 5 mm thick or 30×45 cm (12×18 inch) wide. Drop the filling across the rolled dough and spread it thinly, leaving 2 cm (1 inch) from all sides. 

Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

5. Roll the dough from the longest side, then thuck the ends underneath. Cut the rolled dough in half length-wise. You can cut as I did, leaving some part of the dough uncut or you can completely cut it in half. Flip the cut halves outwards.

Sourdough cinnamon twist bread
Sourdough cinnamon twist bread
Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

6. Start braiding two strands one over another. Tuck the ends together to form a circle. Place the twisted bread into dutch oven and let it rise.

Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

Final rise

Leave the dough to rise until puffed (doubled in volume). My dough needed 1.5 hours.

Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

Baking

30 minutes before the baking preheat the oven to 200°C (375°F). When the dough is ready, put the dutch oven into oven and bake it until well baked, 30-40 minutes.

Sourdough cinnamon twist bread

Take care!

29 thoughts on “Life twists and sourdough cinnamon and chocolate twist bread

    1. Thank you Alexandra! I was advised to take pain-killers for my neck and back so I started baking – and it helps keeping my mind off the pain and it’s the best anti-depressant :)

  1. Dear sweet Natasa, I am so happy to hear from you and that you are recovering….you last reply to me included the shock of the car wreck.
    You are a very talented baker…you share with others and your gift for explaining your thoughts is so precise and understandable.

    I thank you for sharing your beautiful twist SOURDOUGH cinnamon , chocolate bread with us.

    PATRICIA Facenda
    Virginia, USA

    1. Thank you so much Patricia, I appreciate your kind words and thoughts! :)
      I was quite in shock at that time, and I almost worked it out, but there is still pain reminding me. That too shall pass, someday.

      Natasa

  2. My dear Natasia, it’s so nice to hear from you, as well hearing that you recover. Best wishes from me and Daniel again! Just yesterday we saw a movie at the current berlinale with a closure sentence that accidents are life’s essence. Speaking not of good, or bad, painful or joyfull – just things that happen and have to happen to show us what life’s really about. I really pitty that you had to expierence pain, fear and anger but i definitly venerate that you can see the sideeffects, too. My dear, wow I’m so missing words in this issue. To hug and hold and listen to fits me better. To close with admiration of you beautiful bread seems so odd and inapproriate, too. So, would love to see you again, soon, or talk, or email…if you would like to talk. All the love, Susanna

  3. Dear Natasa, I am so sorry you had to go through that terrible experience and I wish you recover well and feel better soon! Take it easy one step at the time and enjoy little things… This bread is a beauty! Big hug, Lili

  4. I’m so sorry to hear about the accident but am glad you’re finding comfort in the zen of baking. Everything about this recipe is lovely right down to the photos. And thank you for including such helpful step-by-step images. Wishing you a continued and speedy recovery!

    1. Thank you Ana!

      I leave the starter to ferment at the room temperature. Since the kitchen is relatively cool now in thewinter, it gets ready just by the morning.

      Happy baking!
      Nataša

  5. Hi Natasa, what can I say words aren’t always easy to find during times of pain. I wish you an easy recovery and so thankful you have baking to nurture. It is the little things that are often highlighted during these times that keep us happy and calm.
    I can’t wait to make this twist, I think I will save it for Easter next month. I have sourced some lovely NZ grown and fresh milled (a mill is on my wish list!) low gluten flour similar to spelt and einkorn that I have been baking with. It is not bread flour so doesn’t rise a lot but by adding some golden linseed I have been getting some amazing results. Thanks for your inspiring blog that reminded me how much I love to bake real bread!

    1. Hi Nicola!

      Thank you for sharing your kind words of support :)
      My floor has been shaking ever since the crash and got me to think a lot about different things. It’s hard, but I hope to get out of it soon.

      This bread would also be perfect in its savory version – or chocolate and hazelnuts together, mmm :)

      Looking forward to see your breads!

      Love, Natasa

  6. I am glad you are recovering and you live to see another day with a renewed perspective. Life is so precious and such a delicate thing.

    I made this beautiful bread the other day for a dessert for family and friends. It wasn’t too hard to do. We loved it, even my son who doesn’t like dark chocolate. I like that it wasn’t sickly sweet. It almost has a doughnut flavour to it. Will make again. Your recipe is so well explained and easy to follow. Thanks. Keep well

    1. Cheryl, thank you so much for your feedback and for trying out the recipe :)
      It’s really a nice little Sunday treat, but it can also made savory, with pesto for example.

      PS: the theme of your blog is exactly what I’m into in last two month since the car crash. Very important topic. Very.

      Natasa

  7. Hi Natasa, I have just found you and will give this twist a try this weekend. One thing though, when you say that you bake in a dutch oven does that mean that you bake it with the lid on? And if so, is the lid on for the whole time or do you take the lid off for the last 10 minutes?

    Sorry to read about your accident – I hope you are well into your recovery.

    Regards,
    Carol

    1. Hi Carol! :)

      Thanks for your question! I baked it with a lid off, you could also use any other pan instead of dutch oven, but it looks very rustic in dutch oven :) I think the lid is not necessary here, as we want slightly soft (but still crunchy) crust. If you want, you can apply some steam in the first minutes of baking, by throwing couple of ice cubes (or water) on the tray you place on the lower rack.

      Hope your twist bread turns out great!

      Wish you a nice weekend,
      Nataša

  8. Thanks for sharing the sourdough bread recipe .All the contents meets the purpose .I have also a Recipe sites in which i explain the Ingredients and Method of the Sourdough Bread recipe in very easy way.Any body whose want to interest to making the sourdough bread loaf check in my website.

  9. I didn’t realize how skillful you need to be for this one, my twist bread did not even come close to looking like yours but it tasted great so I will be trying it out again.

  10. in the ingredients you have warm milk, but when I read the directions for the dough you say dissolve the starter in warm water? also is there a specific temp for the warm milk/water?

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Michelle, thank you for noticing! You can use either water or milk, both will work. Regarding the temperature – room temperature works. If you want to speed up the fermentation, you can keep it a little bit warmer – 25-27°C.

      Hope you give it a try :)

      Natasa

  11. Good Afternoon to you!! I just found you, because I was looking for sweet sourdough bread recipes. My question is: I have been feeding my sourdough for a month now, making various breads and pizzas, how do I incorporate my sourdough starter into this recipe, so I don’t need to begin again for this bread? It looks fabulous!! Thank you, and I sure hope this finds you feeling much better than when you first did this bread!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *