Slightly bitter semisweet chocolate pairs well with the fragrant warmth of fresh orange zest in this classic sweet bread. Chocolate Orange Loaf makes a wonderful addition to a special occasion meal. Arrange a few slices on a pretty plate and add a mug of Café Noisette for a calming snack.
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 3 hours
- 3 ½ cups bread flour
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon mixed spice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 oz cold butter
- ¼ oz quick dry yeast
- ½ cup superfine (baker’s) granulated sugar
- ½ cup candied peel
- 4 teaspoons fresh orange zest
- 1 cup chopped semisweet chocolate pieces
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup whole milk, warmed slightly
In a large bowl, mix together the bread flour, spices, and salt until combined. Using a pastry cutter or your hands, rub in or cut it the cold butter until the flour has a sandy texture.
Stir in the yeast, sugar, candied peel, orange zest, chocolate, and egg. Add the warm milk and stir until the mixture forms soft, elastic dough. Set the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and allow it to rise in a warm place for 90 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Divide the dough between 2 lightly greased 8-inch by 4-inch pans and allow the loaves to rest, covered, for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake the dough for 50–65 minutes. Cool the bread for 25 minutes in the pans before removing.
Makes 16 servings.