Brioche wreath with dark chocolate and pistachio filling +christmas in NZ

Now christmas is coming soon, I have started to bake, and bake and bake. I really can't help it, everywhere online, I see people posting pictures of their cinnamon rolls, sugar cookies and shortbread, and I feel as if I should be baking too.  It is summer in New Zealand, but really it feels like winter. It is rainy, humid and windy, which isn't pleasant at all. However, I do enjoy waking up at 8 o clock every morning and not having to do so much work. Today I baked this dark chocolate pistachio brioche wreath. I use an adapted  brioche dough from smitten kitchen and I created a delicious gooey filling using dark chocolate, pistacho, walnuts and cinnamon. Wait there is more! along with the dark chocolate filling there is also a layer of cinnamon sugar in between. Every bite will have flavours of cinnamon, chocolate and pistachos. It will be amazing ...

To make it healthier, I used coconut sugar in place of normal flour and subbed in some wholewheat flour for more nutrition. Don't worry! it is still fluffy and rich like brioche, and you will enjoy the gooey dark chocolate filling. This brioche is a bit tricky to make, especially the part where you must make the dough into a wreath, but the effort is worth it!

Brioche wreath with dark chocolate and pistacho filling (AKA BDP)
Adapted from smitten kitchen


Brioche dough:
1/2 cup whole milk
1/4 cup coconut sugar
2 tsp active dry yeast
1 egg
1 cup all purpose plain flour
scant 1 cup whole wheat flour (measure out slightly less then 1 cup or 7/8 cup)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbs softened butter

Dark chocolate filling:
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup roughly chopped dark chocolate (around 75 grams),  I use 62%
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup pistachos
1/4 tsp salt

Cinnamon sugar coating (Optional, but also very necessary)
2 tbs melted butter
Coconut sugar and cinnamon to sprinkle on top of rolled out dough
1 tsp of cinnamon: 3-4 tbs coconut sugar

1 egg for eggwash
freezed dried cherries
icing sugar (for something special)

Warm milk with a pinch of sugar/honey on a stove until it is warm, but not hot to touch. It should be around 40 degrees celsius, the temperature of bath water. Sprinkle in yeast. Let it stand for 5-10 minutes until foaming and you can smell the strong yeast flavour. In a small bowl, whisk together egg and 1/4 cup coconut sugar, then gradually whisk in foamy yeast mixture.

In a large bowl, combine flours, cinnamon and salt. Add egg+yeast mixture, use a spoon to mix until a dough forms and ingreaients are well incorporated. Add 3 tbs softened butter and incorporate well into the dough. You may have to use some muscle here to get rid of the streaks of butter in the dough, I used a stabbing motion. You should have a soft, lightly brown piece of dough.

On a lightly floured surface, knead dough for 5-10 minuted until the dough is smooth, subtly shiny and stretchy. The dough should feel very soft, smooth and even a bit glossy. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and let it rise in a warm place for 1 hour. If there is no warm place around, preheat your oven to 70F, switch it off, leave the door open, and place the dough inside there.

After one hour, the dough should have doubled in size and expanded. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a rectangle, the dough should be 1 cm thick. Lightly brush dough with melted butter, sprinkle with cinnamon and coconut sugar, and spread out the dark chocolate filling. The dark chocolate filling will be very chunky, so feel free to quit trying to spread it and drop little bombs of it all over your dough.

Starting from the long end of your rectangular dough, roll your dough into a tight, but not too tight, log.
Using a pear of kitchen scissors, cut diagonal slights along both sides of your log. Leave a few centimetres from the centre, do cut all the way in! you will chop your log in half.
Form a wreath by joining both ends together. It will form a cool star like shaped that you can stop to admire and appreciate. I have drawn a diagram to make up for my vague explanation :)

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Place wreath onto a pan lined with parchment paper. Brush with beaten egg. Send it into the oven to bake for 25 minutes, then lower the temperature of oven down to 190 degrees, and bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until wreath is golden brown. As every oven is different, I suggest you keep a close eye and not let your m
ind wander.

Let the wreath cool for a minute or two, top with freeze dried cherries and icing sugar, and tuck in :)



About me

Hi I'm Cindy.