Goodmorning dear friends! I've baked a beehive Easter bread with little bee buns and they taste divine, especially when you top them with some honeycomb! And because I feel like a little busy bee myself this morning because of all the things I want to get done before Easter (like: hiding Easter eggs, do grocery shopping, assemble a happy Easter outfit because my yellow dress in the making I meant to wear tomorrow isn't finished yet) I decided not to bother you with long history tales about Easter bread. So if you're a little busy bee yourself right now, you can immediately scroll down for the recipe and bake yourself and your loved ones these very happy Easter breads!
Beehive Easter Bread with Little Bee Buns
1,5 kg flour
600 ml lukewarm water
15 gr dried yeast
large pinch of salt
zest of 1 orange
175 gr raisins
125 ml mead
100 gr soft butter
1 egg yolk
2 tbsp all spice
150 gr walnuts, roughly chopped
125 gr sugar
2 tbsp apricot jam
1. In a large bowl mix the flour with the salt and the orange zest. Make a fountain in the middle and add the yiest and the water. Stirr the water into the flour and knead until all the ingredients are fully incorporated into the dough. Add water if the dough is too dry. Add flour if the dough is to sticky. Knead for 10 minutes (you can use a mixer to do this) until soft and elastic. You should be able to to stretch the dough without tearing it.
2. Place the dough in a large, well-oiled bowl. Leave in a warm place to rise for 45-60 minutes, or until it's doubled in size.
3. While your dough is rising, mix the raisins, walnuts, sugar and mead and set aside. Mix the butter with the egg yolk and all spice.
4. Preheat your oven to 200C. Tip the dough onto your work surface and knead to knock out any air bubbles. Add the butter mixture and knead until it has been fully incorporated. If the dough gets too sticky, add some flour.
5. Add raisins and walnuts. Do NOT add the liquid the raisins and walnuts were in, because your dough will become too wet. Only add the raisins and walnuts and knead until they are fully incorporated. If the dough gets too sticky, add some flour.
6. Devide your dough in two halves. Make a long cylinder shape with one half and place it rolled up in a cirkle on a lined baking sheet. Flatten one side of the cirkle, this will be the bottom of your hive. Make diagonal cuts all over the bread using a large knife and create hive squares. If you can think of a way to make hexagon figures to really imitate a bee hive: let me know!
7. Bake the beehive bread for 30 minutes. Heat the left over mead-liquid and add the apricot jam. Reduce the liquid to a sticky syrup.
8. Remove the bread from the oven and cover with the sticky syrup. Place back into the oven and bake for another 15-20 minutes until golden brown.
9. Make little bee-shaped buns from the other half of the dough and place them on a lined baking sheet. Make vertical cuts on the buns to imitate their yellow and black stripes. Bake the buns for 20-30 minutes.
10. Remove the buns from the oven and cover with the sticky syrup. Place back into the oven and bake for another 15 minutes until golden brown.
Serve on a large plate: let the bees swarm around the hive. And like I said: they taste divine with some honeycomb. Happy Easter to you all!