Vegan Swiss Zopf – A Braided Brunch Bread

Vegan Swiss Zopf – A Braided Brunch Bread

Having journeyed a bit around the world over the years, I’ve found Switzerland was my favorite temporary home. Having spent months knee-deep in Swiss culture, there were so many culinary takeaways, this one is certainly a favorite.

Sunday Brunch was the dream.

Living in Brig-Glis, on the Swiss-German side of the country, is where I first discovered my deep-rooted love of Sunday Brunch. My host family would invite their entire family over… every… single… Sunday. They would each prepare a dish and brunch would begin around 10:30 am. This was my absolute favorite day of the week, and that excitement has followed me back to the United States.

Though I first learned about Zopf bread on an Easter Sunday in Frauenfeld years prior, the cravings began thanks to my time in Brig-Glis.

Zopf typically made from flour, milk, egg, butter, this recipe has been altered in ingredients but fluffy and crave-ably delicious in taste. After some experimenting, I’ve found a combination of vegan substitutes that truly reminds me of this brunch favorite.

Vegan Swiss Zopf – A Braided Brunch Bread

A vegan rendition of Swiss braided bread, a brunch staple I've cherished from my time living in Switzerland. Typically made from flour, milk, egg, butter, this recipe has been altered in ingredients but fluffy and crave-ably delicious in taste. Perfect for Sunday brunch, with jams, honey/agave, or your favorite vegan spreads.
Prep Time 2 hrs 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Cuisine Swiss
Servings 1 loaf

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Cups All- Purpose White Flour
  • 8 g Active Dry Yeast About 1 1/8 packet.

    Fast- Rise is fine.

  • 1 TSP Brown sugar
  • 3/4 TBSP Salt
  • 1 Cup Vanilla Soy Milk
  • 4 TBSP Vegan Butter – Melted

Vegan 'Egg Wash'

  • 2 Tbsp Soy or Almond Milk
  • 1 Teaspoon Agave Nectar

Instructions
 

  • In a small bowl combine brown sugar with the yeast until it appears evenly mixed, we will come back to this mix in a moment.
  • Melt the butter in a saucepan over a low heat once fully melted add the cold milk into the pan and whisk together. This will combine into a lukewarm temperature, not too hot, nor too cold. If too cold let it sit on the heat until it warms slightly.
  • Add a small amount of the buttery-milk substance to the brown-sugar yeast until the yeast seems covered with liquid. Likely less than 1/4 cup will do the job. Allow the yeast to sit in the liquid for 7-10 minutes until slightly puffy, or bubbly in appearance.
  • Lightly flour a surface for the upcoming dough.
  • In a large mixing bowl add flour and whisk in salt. Add all remaining wet ingridents to the flour and combine thoroughly. The dough will begin to pull together.
  • Take the dough mixture and begin kneading it on the floured surface, in 5-10 minutes of working with the dough it will look and feel smooth and stretchy. Create a tight ball and place the dough into a separate bowl, cover with a damp towel. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature for 1 1/2 hours, once fully risen you'll notice it has doubled in size.
  • Preheat oven to 395 degrees.
  • Pulling the dough from the bowl knead into a ball once more and cut in half using a sharp knife. You may need more flour on surface & hands to avoid excessive sticking, use in small sprinkles.
  • Roll each half of the dough into a string. You will have two strings in which you will use to braid your Zopf. I've included a step-by-step photo, utilize Youtube videos alternatively.
  • Place the braided bread onto a baking pan lined with parchment paper.
  • Brush bread with your vegan egg wash and let the bread proof again for 30 minutes.
  • Brush bread again with the vegan egg wash and place bread in the oven to bake. Bake time is approximately 30-35 minutes. I'm a firm believer in intuitive baking, pay attention to the bread about 25 minutes it, and use your gut. It should have a crisp golden brown braided crust, the internal temperature should be 165 degrees or more to be fully baked.
  • Allow to COOL to retain internal moisture.
Keyword braided bread, breakfast bread, brunch bread, butterzopf, swiss bread, switzerland bread, vegan braided bread, vegan bread, vegan zopf, zopf


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