I have not posted something in such a long time. The truth is that I was busy studying, cooking, enjoying time with my beloved friends in Copenhagen.
Few weeks ago, my mother wanted to send me a parcel with a gift (it was shoes!!), so she asked if I wanted anything from Greece. I asked for two specific spices, because I wanted to make something that we usually eat traditionally on Easter. Well, she sent me mastic and mahlab as I had asked her too ( to be completely honest and pay tribute to my mother´s care for me, she had included so many other stuff that I usually miss, like a stick of lavender from our garden).
So few days ago, I attempted to make tsoureki, some sort of sweet bread. For my family, that is one of the reason to compete, or rather have long discussions about every year. That is due to the fact that there is not a satisfying recipe to make it and since it yeast is involved some times you do not get the results you want. My mother had given me a recipe, though which I altered a bit. It was really successful, so my mother asked for my recipe in return!
The ingredients I used are the followings:
1 cup of warm milk in which I added 150 gr of butter
1+ cup of sugar ( 1 cup is enough, but not for my family)
50 gr yeast ( 1 cube)
1 kg flour
2 tsp mahlab
2 tsp mastic (you can add more, I am pretty sure I did, but this is the safest option)
In a small bowl dissolve the yeast in some water. Add some of the flour and let the yeast be activated for half an hour in a warm place.
Add all the ingredients in a big bowl and stir well until the sugar is dissolved.
The next step is to add the rest of the flour and the activated yeast.
Give it some love and then cover the bowl with a towel. It will take few hours till it is ready but when you thing that the dough has gained some volume, create the shape presented on the above picture, or just give the dough any shape you like. Let it gain some additional volume and then bake in a preheated oven. The temperature has to be around 160 degrees. It will take approximately 40 minutes to be baked.
It is not a simple recipe as one can guess but it is worth trying!
My classmates at Uni really enjoyed it the day after! Morning classes and breakfast is a nice way to start the day!