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We are now at the breakfast portion of this month's Cooking with Astrology "Aquarius" meal. There are three main foods that everyone talks about when you move to Iowa; pork tenderloins, Maidrite (loose meat) sandwiches, and Traditional Kolaches! They even have a Kolache Festival every year where you will find thousands of Kolache for sale.
As soon as I chose Ashton Kutcher as the inspiration for this meal, I knew I HAD to make Traditional Czech Kolaches! My favorite flavors are pineapple, apricot, and apple, but I didn't want to make my own fillings. I knew blueberry was a must, and the apricot preserves where sitting on the shelf right next to them.
What are Kolaches?
Kolaches are a bread "wheel" filled with a sweet filling. Their texture is very similar to a brioche bread. Traditional fillings include; prune, poppy seed, nut, cottage cheese, pineapple, apricot, apple, cherry, and plum. Pretty much any flavor you can think of! 🙂
How to make Kolaches:
First you will need to proof your yeast in warm water and a teaspoon of sugar.....
Poof, it foams up and we know that the yeast is still alive!
Pour the warm milk, sugar, yeast, and butter into the bowl of a stand mixer.....or a large bowl if you are doing this by hand.....
add 2 cups of flour and salt, and mix together.....
add the beaten egg yolks and remaining flour.....
Mix until thoroughly combined.....
Place in a greased bowl and cover. Let rise in a warm location until doubled. My mixer has a lid, so I skip the bowl.....
See, nice a puffy after about an hour.....
Divide into 24 balls and place on a baking sheet.....
Dip your finger or thumb in cooled, melted butter and form "wells" into each dough ball.....
Fill each "well" with fruit preserves and let sit for 15 minutes.....
Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown, remove from oven, and brush edges with butter.....
Allow to cool and serve.
I hope everyone enjoyed this month's meal as much as I did. I love learning about new cultures and trying new foods!
Recipes for this month's Aquarius meal:
- ½ cup warm water 110 degrees
- 1 ½ cups warm milk 110 degrees - I used coconut milk
- 4 ½ teaspoons yeast
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter 1 stick, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 large egg yolks beaten
- 5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- all-natural fruit preserves I used blueberry and apricot
- 2 - 3 Tablespoons melted butter for brushing tops
- In a small bowl, mix warm water with yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Set aside and allow to bubble.
- Pour milk into the bowl of a stand mixer. Add sugar, butter, and yeast.
- Mix in flour and salt.
- Add beaten egg yolks and remaining flour. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Place dough into a large, greased bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm location until doubled in size.
- Divide dough into 24 equal balls and place onto a silpat/parchment covered baking sheet.
- Dip thumb into cooled, melted butter and make a "well" in the top of each of the balls.
- Heat oven to 375 degrees. Fill with fruit preserves and let rise for 15 minutes.
- Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and brush top of bread surface with butter.
- The traditional fillings for Czech Kolaches are: prune, plum, poppy seed, cottage cheese, pineapple, nut, cherry, blueberry, apricot, and apple.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 1 month.