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Cranberry-orange braided brioche

20 February 2018 (Last Updated: 23 June 2019)

Cranberry-orange braided brioche

Delicious buttery brioche with dried cranberries, orange zest and a crunchy crumble on top. Brioche is a French yeast bread with lots of butter, eggs and milk. This recipe requires the use of an electric mixer fitted with a hook atachment, because the dough for brioche is quite wet and sticky and needs to be kneaded much longer than a traditional yeast dough (high fat content in the dough causes slower gluten formation, which gives the dough elasticity). Brioche is easy to make, requires, though, a little patience – the dough has to rest for a minimum of 6 hours, and preferably overnight in the fridge (it will develop great flavor and texture), but it‘s definitely worth it, because after that you have a wonderfully smelling, fluffy and buttery bread.

I baked this brioche in the form of a braided challah, which is a typical Jewish bread. Growing up in Poland, I‘ve eaten challah very often, always convinced that it‘s a polish bread. In Poland we call Challah – ‚Chałka’.

This is a modified recipe from this blog, I‘m participating in the #synchronbacken (synchronous baking), organized by the Zorra of kochtopf.me (in German). This initiative was a lot of fun! On a particular day a group of volunteers gather to bake a selected recipe and this month we‘ve baked brioche. I halved the original recipe, used 1 egg yolk instead of ½ egg, soft butter instead of a cold one, I also added dried cranberries, orange zest and a crumble on top.

Chałka z ciasta na brioche z żurawiną i pomarańczą Cranberry-orange braided brioche
Chałka z ciasta na brioche z żurawiną i pomarańczą Cranberry-orange braided brioche
Chałka z ciasta na brioche z żurawiną i pomarańczą Cranberry-orange braided brioche
Cranberry-orange braided brioche
Chałka z ciasta na brioche z żurawiną i pomarańczą Cranberry-orange braided brioche
Cranberry-orange braided brioche
Chałka z ciasta na brioche z żurawiną i pomarańczą Cranberry-orange braided brioche
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5 from 1 vote

Cranberry-orange braided brioche

(!) the dough needs to be refrigerated overnight
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting time + Proofing 12 hours
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 2 loaves
Author Aleksandra

Ingredients

brioche:

  • 500 g all-purpose flour 17.6 oz
  • 12 g instant yeast 3 teaspoons
  • 75 g sugar 2.6 oz
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 75 g milk 2.6 oz
  • 10 g salt 2 teaspoons
  • 200 g butter at room temperature, cut into small pieces, 7 oz
  • additionally:
  • 80 g dried cranberries 6 tablespoons, about a ¾ cup
  • 5 tablespoons orange juice from 1 medium orange
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest grated, from 2 small oranges

egg wash:

  • 1 egg lightly beaten

crumble:

  • 40 g all-purpose flour 1.4 oz
  • 30 g butter cold, 1 oz
  • 25 g sugar 0.9 oz

Instructions

make the dough:

  • If you forgot to warm up the butter, cut it into small pieces, spread them on a plate and put in a warm place.
  • Add all the ingredients, except the salt and butter, to the mixer bowl, knead with a hook attachment for 5 minutes at the lowest speed.
  • Add the salt and knead for a further 10 minutes (low speed 1/2).
  • Knead the dough for a further 10 minutes (low speed 1/2), adding the butter in teaspoon-sized pieces. Add another piece of butter when the previous chunk is almost incorporated. At the end add the orange zest. Stop and scrape down the sides of the mixer bowl as needed. The dough should be smooth, glossy and a little jiggly.

first rise:

  • Cover the bowl and leave in a warm place for 1.5 hours to rise.
  • Deflate the dough – lift the dough and drop it down onto the work surface from a height of about 20 cm.
  • resting the dough:
  • Form the dough into a ball, put in a bowl, cover and leave in the fridge for a minimum of 6 hours or overnight.
  • Soak the cranberries in the orange juice, cover and leave in the fridge overnight.

second rise:

  • On the next day, drain the cranberries, pat them dry lightly with paper towels. Knead the cranberries into the dough (with your hands).
  • Divide the dough into 2 equal parts, divide each of those into 3 parts and wrap the braid. Roll each piece of dough into a long rope, roughly 35 cm / 14 inches long (if they shrink let them rest for 5 minutes). Braid the ropes together like braiding hair, squeeze the ends together when complete. Repeat with the remaining dough (the recipe yields 2 loaves).
  • Put the braids on a baking sheet lined with a parchment paper, cover with a clean dishcloth and leave to rise in a warm place for about 2 hours. The dough should increase its volume.

bake:

  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C / 350 °F / Gas Mark 4, no fan.
  • Make the crumble: rub all the ingredients together until a crumble is formed.
  • Brush the braids with the beaten egg and sprinkle the crumble on top.
  • Bake for about 30 minutes until the bread is golden and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean (when the brioche starts to brown too fast, cover it with a piece of baking paper).
  • Take the brioche out of the oven, transfer immediately onto a cooling rack, after 10 minutes it‘s ready to be sliced and served.
Course Appetizer, Bread, Breakfast
Cuisine French
Keyword Braided brioche recipe, Brioche recipe, Challah recipe, cranberry orange brioche, cranberry orange challah

Did you make this recipe? Let me know how you liked it and give it a star rating in the comments below! You can also add a photo of your creation!

Sandra von From-Snuggs-Kitchen
Zorra von 1x umrühren bitte aka kochtopf
Conny von Mein wunderbares Chaos
Jutta von  jutt-ah.de 
Rebekka von Pfanntastisch!
Bo von Bo’s Kitchen
Katha von katha-kocht!
Sarah von Kinder, kommt essen!
Birgit M. von Backen Mit Leidenschaft 

Sylvia von Brotwein
Caroline von Linal’s Backhimmel
Anna von teigliebe
Christina von The Apricot Lady
Birgit D von Birgit D – Kreativität in Küche, Haus & Garten
Eva von evchenkocht
Anna und Martin von Die Küchenwiesel
Becky von Baking Science Traveller
Steffi von Dulcipessa
Verena von Verena’s blog schöne Dinge
Tina von Küchenmomente
Sabine von Fundstücke
Simone von zimtkringel
Steffi von Kochtrotz

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21 Comments

  • Reply
    zorra
    21 February 2018 at 10:26

    Your braids look amazing! Thank you for participating in #synchronbacken! Hope next time you will join us, too.

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      21 February 2018 at 16:25

      Thank you! It was a lot of fun, I can’t wait for the next #synchronbacken 🙂

  • Reply
    Conny
    21 February 2018 at 11:08


    Liebe Aleksandra,

    wow! Das ist ja auch eine wahnsinnig leckere Variante der Brioche. Ich stöbere gerade durch die Blogs und bin begeistert, dass alle zwar nach dem selben Rezept gebacken haben, aber die Ergebnisse überall so individuell sind. Sehr lecker sieht das bei Dir aus.

    Herzlichst, Conny

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      21 February 2018 at 19:37

      Danke, das ist sehr nett! Ich bin auch überrascht, dass jeder eine andere Variante ausgedacht hat!

  • Reply
    Becky
    21 February 2018 at 12:21

    Oh, I love your version of the Brioche! I baked some bread rolls with chocolate, which was very good, too. 🙂
    All the best, Becky

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      21 February 2018 at 16:23

      Thank you very much! I can imagine that the version with chocolate is also delicious, I will try it next time 🙂

      • Reply
        Becky
        21 February 2018 at 23:04

        That’s great! Let me know, how you liked it. 🙂

  • Reply
    Sarah von Kinder, kommt essen!
    21 February 2018 at 18:56

    Das klingt verdammt lecker,
    Liebe Grüße,
    Sarah

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      21 February 2018 at 19:37

      Danke Dir, das ist sehr nett! 🙂

  • Reply
    Anna
    21 February 2018 at 20:23

    Dein Brioche sieht soo gut aus, ich liebe die Kombination! Einen schönen Abend dir noch! Liebe Grüße, Anna

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      21 February 2018 at 20:37

      Danke Dir, sie war wirklich lecker! LG!

  • Reply
    Verena
    23 February 2018 at 19:45

    Deine Brioche sieht wirklich sehr hübsch aus und genauso wird sie auch geschmeckt haben 🙂 !! Lg Verena

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      23 February 2018 at 21:06

      Danke Liebe Verena :):):)

  • Reply
    Birgit M.
    1 March 2018 at 10:10

    So lecker und super, wie vielfältig dieses Rezept gebacken wurde. liebe Grüsse Birgit

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      1 March 2018 at 19:07

      Danke Liebe Birgit!

  • Reply
    Eva von evchenkocht
    4 March 2018 at 17:11

    Hey Aleksandra,
    what a beautiful braid! And the crumbs on top – looks so fluffy and delicious! I absolutely like to taste!

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      5 March 2018 at 10:26

      thank you Eva for your kind words!

  • Reply
    The Apricot Lady
    4 March 2018 at 18:13

    it looks sooooo fluffy *.*

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      5 March 2018 at 10:25

      thank you! It really was fluffy!

  • Reply
    Rebekka
    23 May 2018 at 20:00

    Sieht toll aus! Ich muss auch bald noch einmal Brioche backen, gerne auch süß wie deine Variante!

    • Reply
      Aleksandra
      24 May 2018 at 19:16

      Danke Dir! Probier es auf jeden Fall, ist wirklich gut 🙂

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