The September Daring Bakers’ challenge was brought to us by Lucie from ChezLucie. She challenged us to make a true Czech treat –Kolaches!

When the September Daring Bakers challenge was announced I had no idea what I was making. I had never heard of “Prague Kolach” but with detailed instructions from Lucie of ChezLucie I was on my way to a “true Czech treat”.

The yeast dough was the first surprise because it contained mayonaise! With the extra fat in the dough I found it was much slower to rise. In fact after the second rise and bake I really thought I had a fail. However I made the filling which was an interesting custard type filling made with vanilla pastry cream powder. Hard to find for some but in Australia we call it “custard powder” and it is very readily available and used by many. The hot custard mixture was placed into a stand mixer and stirred with the paddle on a slow speed until cold. Then butter is beaten into this mix! Wow! This resulted in a very rich delicious cream. I used the entire quantity of cream (it was quite a bit) to fill what was a very flat cake and it rose to the occassion!

Thank you Lucie. Again I have stepped out of my comfort zone!

Here is the recipe as provided by Lucie of Chez Lucie

Prague Kolach

Ingredients
for cake:
1¾ cups (420 ml) (9 oz) (250 gm) all-purpose (plain) flour
½ cup (120 ml) (125 gm) mayonnaise (store-bought or home-made), room temperature
2 tablespoons (30 ml) (1 oz) (30 gm) granulated sugar
1 small egg, room temperature
15 gm (½ oz) fresh yeast or 1 packet (2 teaspoons) (7gm) dry active yeast
5 tablespoons (75 ml) milk, warm
½ teaspoon (3 gm) salt
for cream:
2 cups (500 ml) milk, divided
½ cup (120 ml) (3½ oz) (100 gm) granulated sugar plus 1 tablespoon (½ oz) (15 gm)vanilla sugar
½ cup (120 ml) (2-2/3 oz) (75 gm) vanilla pastry cream powder
1 stick (½ cup) (4 oz) (125 gm) butter, room temperature
5 tablespoons (75 ml) double cream, chilled
for streusel topping:
1/3 cup (1¾ oz) (50 gm) plain flour
¼ cup (60 ml) (1¾ oz) (50 gm) butter, chilled and diced
¼ cup (60 ml) (1¾ oz) (50 gm) caster (or granulated) sugar
½ teaspoon (2 gm) ground cinnamon
for finishing:
1 small egg, lightly beaten
Directions:
In a bowl of your stand mixer, sift flour and make a hole in the middle. Crumb the yeast into the hole, add 1 teaspoon sugar and about 3 teaspoons warm milk. Mix yeast, sugar and milk with fork and lightly sprinkle the surface with flour. Cover the bowl with towel and let rise for 10-15 minutes.
Add rest ingredients (mayonnaise, sugar, milk, egg and salt) and knead with dough hook on low speed for 10 minutes, until you have smooth dough.
Add rest ingredients (mayonnaise, sugar, milk, egg and salt) and knead with dough hook on low speed for 10 minutes, until you have smooth dough.

 

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cover with towel or clingfilm and let rise for about an hour to double its volume.


 

Form the dough into a ball and place it onto the baking sheet lined with parchment paper. With your palms and fingers press the dough and shape it to disc about 20–25 cm (8-10 inch) in diameter and 2–3 cm (¾-1 inch)thick. Let rise for 30 minutes.

 

Meanwhile preheat your oven to moderate 320°F/160°C/gas mark 3 and make streusel topping. In a medium bowl, mix together sugar, flour and cinnamon. Add cold butter and with your fingers, mix all ingredients until crumbly.

 

Brush the cake with eggwash and sprinkle with generous amount of streusel topping.

 

Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack.

 

Prepare the cream.
In a small bowl, mix well ½ cup (125ml) milk with the vanilla pastry cream powder. Set aside. In a saucepan, mix the rest of the milk 1½ cup (375ml) with the sugar and vanilla sugar and bring it to boil, stir occasionally. Add the milk-pasty cream powder mixture and boil for 3 – 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Transfer the mixture into a bowl of your standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment and let cool completely, while stirring constantly on a low speed. Add diced butter and mix together.
Separately whip the double cream until stiff. Mix with vanilla cream.

 
 

Cut cooled cake lengthwise and spread the cream onto the bottom part. Cover with upper part. Cut into 8 to 10 pieces.