After 5 years of living abroad, eating French baguette or croissants quite often, I sometimes feel nostalgic about Czech bread knots called ‚houska‘. In Belgium there are many Polish shops where they sell bread similar to ours, but still the texture isn’t the same as I am used to. So I need to produce it on my own. But I do not mind as I love to prepare homemade breakfast. It makes me forget to live in a society where you can buy everything without an effort.
When I was a kid, in my home town there was a bakery and every time I passed by with my mum or grandma, I could smell the freshly made ‚houska‘. So every time I try to do these on my own, the smell reminds me of the old times and my home town.
When I have the opportunity to substitute milk in the recipes, I do it. In this case, as you can use either milk or water, knowing that almond milk contains +/- 94% water, I opted for almond milk.
- 250 ml almond milk / water
- 50 g melted butter
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 500 g flour T 45
- 30 g fresh yeast
- 1 egg, beaten
- Poppy seeds / cumin
- If you use the bread machine for the preparation of the dough, put in the ingredients in the above listed order and skip the following step.
- If you do not have the bread machine, prepare the dough manually: in a small bowl, combine 100 ml of lukewarm almond milk or water, crumbled yeast, tea spoon of sugar and sprinkle with a table spoon of flour. Cover the bowl with a towel and let it rise on a warm place for about 30 minutes. In a large bowl, combine the flour with the base prepared, add the rest of almond milk, melted butter, eggs, salt and elaborate the dough. Leave the bowl covered with a towel on a warm place for 1 – 1.5 hour (until it doubles the volume).
- Preheat the oven to 190°C. Turn out the dough on the floured board, knead well. If the dough sticks to your hand, just add flour. Divide the dough into 12 pieces, then divide each piece into 3 pieces and braid the 3 pieces together. Do this with all 12 pieces.
- Place all the knots on the greased cooking sheet and brush with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with poppy seeds or cumin. Let rise another 15 minutes.
- Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven.
- Serve with butter and jam.
- In this recipe, I use almond milk instead of the normal milk, but you can do it with water too.