I’ve introduced myself to a sweet, spiraled, yeasted bread, and I’m so glad I did.

Walnut Potica
Bake from Scratch, September/October 2019
Makes 1 loaf

1 cup warm whole milk (105°F to 110°F)
4½ tsp. active dry yeast
25.38 oz. (5¾ cups) all-purpose flour
½ cup granulated sugar
2 tsp. kosher salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
Walnut Filling (recipe follows)
Garnish: confectioners’ sugar

In a small bowl, whisk together warm milk and yeast. Let stand until mixture is foamy, about 10 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine flour, granulated sugar, and salt. Add eggs. With mixer on low speed, gradually add melted butter. Add yeast mixture, beating until combined, about 30 seconds. Switch  to the dough hook attachment. Beat at low speed until dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.

Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and shape into a smooth ball. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°F) until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Lightly butter a 15-cup Bundt pan.

Punch down dough. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 21x18-inch rectangle. Spread cooled Walnut Filling onto dough, leaving a 1-inch border on one short side. Lightly brush border with water. Starting with opposite short side, roll dough into a log; press seam to seal. (Be sure to press gently, because dough may tear if pinched.) Trim ends. Place log seam side up, and shape into a circle. Brush ends with water, and press together. Use hands to lift and place in prepared pan. Gently press dough flat. (Don’t worry if dough doesn’t look beautiful. It will fill out and bake well once in proofs.) Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°F) until puffed and dough fills three-fourths of pan, 30 to 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Bake until deep golden and an instant-read thermometer inserted near center registers 190°F, about 50 minutes. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes. Invert onto a wire rack, and let cool completely. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.

Walnut Filling
Makes 2½ cups

2 cups walnuts
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup honey
½ cup whole milk
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

In the work bowl of a food processor, process walnuts until finely ground and uniform in size.

In a medium saucepan, stir together sugar, honey, and milk. Cook over medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture starts to boil. Stir in ground walnuts and salt. Whisk in egg and egg yolk. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens slightly, becomes glossy, and registers 175°F to 180°F on an instant-read thermometer, 6 to 7 minutes.

Pour mixture into a medium bowl; stir in vanilla. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap, pressing wrap directly onto surface of filling. Refrigerate until completely cooled. (For a quick cool down, place bowl in an ice water bath, and let stand, stirring every 5 minutes, until filling cools and thickens.)

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I did weigh my flour, because there’s so much of it, here. Remember to give your yeast time to bloom and your dough time to rise.

My imperfect handling of the spiraled dough was indeed no worry. The big Bundt pan swallowed it and then let it rise again.

I baked my bread for 45 minutes, until it hit 190°F.

You’ll want to eat slice after slice of this luscious, glorious, rich bread. And the walnut filling is oh-so-sweet. Truly magnificent.

I can’t stop here. Next time, I’ll bake the “Apple Oat Bread” from the same September/October 2019 issue of Bake from Scratch. Come back to my site next week to enjoy it with me.