Ensaymada (Sugar Bread)
3 cups bread flour
1- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 pouch rapid rise yeast
3 egg yolks
1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup water
extra flour for kneading
Method of preparation:
Dissolve yeast in water and 1/4 cup sugar. Stir to dissolve and let stand for 5-10 minutes. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the milk, 1/4 cup sugar, butter, egg yolks and salt.
Blend well then add the yeast mixture.
Add flour to make a moderate stiff dough. **Note: Check the consistency of the dough before putting all the remaining flour. (use of flour depends on the type of flour, milk and the size of the eggs). Dough should be moderate to stiff and elastic.
Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for about 10 minutes or until dough is smooth & elastic.
Transfer the dough to a greased bowl, cover with a damp cloth and let it rise in a warm place for at least an hour.
After rising, transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface.
Use a dough slicer to divide the dough into 4 equal parts.
Roll each part until it forms into a log. Cut each log into equal pieces. (see picture above)
Flatten the dough with a rolling pin until it stretches into a long cylindrical shape. (see picture above)
Roll up starting from the side all the way to the other side until it forms a small rope. (see picture above)
(Before you roll up you can also add cheese on top of the flattened dough if you want.)
Hold both ends and swing gently to elongate.
Form into ensaymada knots. (see picture above)
Place all the shaped dough on a lightly greased baking sheet or tray lined with wax paper.
Cover the tray with a damp cloth and let it rise for 20-30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
Combine melted butter and sugar. Brush all the ensaymada with butter sugar mixture.
Top with grated cheese.
Serve hot. Enjoy!