Saffron Babka with Dark Chokolate in a Cast Iron Skillet

Saffron Babka with Dark Chokolate in a Cast Iron Skillet recipe


The dough

  • 1 1/2 dl milk
  • 2 packages of saffron (1/2 g pack, 1 g total)
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 12.5 g of fresh yeast
  • 125 g room temperature butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 7 dl flour, approx. 420 g
  • 1/2 tsp salt

The filling

  • 75 g dark chocolate
  • 150 g almond paste
  • 100 g room temperature butter
  • 2 tablespoons of cocoa
  • 1 tbsp vanilla sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Sugar water

  • 3/4 dl sugar
  • 1/2 dl water



  1. Heat the milk with the saffron and sugar until lukewarm. Remove from heat and pour into a large bowl.
  2. Crumble the yeast and stir until the yeast dissolves. Stir in butter, eggs, flour and salt. Work the dough for 10 minutes in a machine or 15 minutes by hand. The dough should be a little sticky. When it is elastic and glossy and starts to release from the bowl, it is ready. Leave to rise covered in the fridge overnight.
  3. For the filling, melt the chocolate gently in the microwave or in a bowl over a water bath. Roughly grate the almond pulp. Mix all the ingredients for the filling into a smooth batter.
  4. Pour the dough out onto a floured bench and roll out to a rectangle approx. 10" x 16" (25 x 40 cm). Spread on the filling. Start rolling up the dough from the long side and make sure that the seam is facing down when the roll is finished. Split the roll lengthwise into two parts with a sharp knife and turn the cut surface upwards. Braid the parts together and then form into a wreath, tucking the ends under each other. Carefully lift the wreath onto a 12" cast iron skillet (if you want a hole in the middle put a drinking glass in the middle) and leave to rise, covered, wiht a kitchen towel for 1 hour.
  5. For the sugar water, boil the sugar and water until the sugar dissolves. Let cool.
  6. Set the oven to 400°F/200°C.
  7. Bake the wreath in the lower part of the oven for about 20 minutes until it gets a nice colour, check with a skewer that it is cooked through. Brush the wreath with sugar water immediately after it comes out of the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.

dough for Saffron Babka with Dark Chokolate

filling for babka

filling spread on the dough

braided babka dough

babka wreath with a glass in the middle

babka in a cast iron skillet

babka in a 12 inch cast iron skillet

saffron babka served with coffee


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