Saffron is said to have arrived in England with the Phoenicians, who traded it for Cornish tin. In the past, when ingredients such as eggs were expensive, saffron was used to give rich yellow colour to this bread, once traditionally served at Easter.
- Portion size 12 servings
- Credits : Canadian Living Magazine: April 2007
- 3/4 cups warm milk
- 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads crumbled
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 pkg active dry yeast
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cups unsalted butter cubed
- 1 egg beaten
- 3/4 cups currants
- 1/4 cup candied mixed peel
- 1 tablespoon milk
MethodStir milk with saffron; let stand for at least 10 or up to 20 minutes.
In small bowl, dissolve 1 tsp (5 mL) of the sugar in warm water. Sprinkle in yeast; let stand for 10 minutes or until frothy.
In large bowl, whisk together flour, remaining sugar and salt. With pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in butter until in crumbs with a few larger pieces. With wooden spoon, stir in yeast mixture, saffron mixture and egg to form soft dough.
Turn out onto lightly floured surface; knead for 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in greased bowl, turning to grease all over. Cover with plastic wrap; let rise in warm draft-free place for about 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.
Punch down dough; knead in currants and candied peel. Divide in half; knead each into ball. Cover with tea towel; let rest for 5 minutes.
Press each half into 12- x 8-inch (30 x 20 cm) rectangle. Starting at narrow end, roll up into cylinder; pinch along bottom to smooth and seal. Fit into 2 greased then parchment paper–lined 8- x 4-inch (1.5 L) loaf pans. Cover loosely; let rise for about 1 hour or until 1/2 inch (1 cm) above rim and dough does not spring back when lightly pressed.
Glaze: Brush tops with milk. Bake in centre of 350°F (180°C) oven for about 45 minutes or until golden and loaves sound hollow when tapped on bottom. Remove from pans; let cool on racks.
Nutritional facts Per slice: about
- Sodium 33 mg
- Protein 3 g
- Calories 156.0
- Total fat 6 g
- Cholesterol 22 mg
- Saturated fat 3 g
- Total carbohydrate 24 g
- Iron 9.0
- Folate 24.0
- Calcium 2.0
- Vitamin A 5.0