Lavender & Lemon Star Bread

Lavender & Lemon Star Bread

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 hours
  • Servings: 1 Star Bread

This elegant, calming star lemon lavender bread is a light and refreshing star bread recipe that’s perfect for any special occasion (and simple enough to make "just because")

Courtesy of Love in My Oven (https://loveinmyoven.com)

INGREDIENTS:

For the Star Bread:

  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon dried lavender
  • 2 1/4 tsp instant or active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 3 tbsp softened butter, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Egg wash: 1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp milk
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar + 1 tablespoon lemon zest (optional)

For the Lemon Lavender Filling:

  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp dried lavender
  • Zest of 1 lemon

Directions:

  • Begin with making the lavender-infused milk. Add 1 tablespoon of dried lavender to 3/4 cup of whole milk, and bring it to a gentle boil in a pot on the stove. Remove the pot from heat, then leave the pot with the lid on for 30 minutes. When you’re ready to start the dough, strain the milk through a fine mesh strainer, collecting the warm milk and discarding the lavender.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast with the sugar and the warm lavender-infused milk. Give it a stir, then cover the bowl with a clean towel for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, the mixture should look puffed up and foamy; if it doesn’t, re-do the steps above and use fresh yeast.
  • Add 1/4 cup of the butter, the egg, flour, salt and lemon zest to the bowl and mix on medium until everything is combined, about 2-3 minutes. The dough will be very soft and slightly sticky but you should be able to pick it up with your hands without too much dough sticking to your hands. If it is VERY sticky, add an extra tablespoon of flour at a time and mix until it is no longer sticky. Form the dough into a ball with your hands and place it into a greased bowl. Cover with saran wrap or a clean towel and allow it to rise for about an hour and a half, until about doubled in size.
  • Make the filling. In a food processor, combine 1 tablespoon of the sugar along with the dried lavender and pulse a few times until the lavender and sugar is combined. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and pulse a few more times. Place the sugar in a small bowl and add the lemon zest, combining it all together. Set aside.
  • When the dough is risen, divide it into 4 equal pieces (use a kitchen scale to be exact, if you’d like). On a lightly floured surface, roll out each piece into a 10″ circle. Place the first circle on to a parchment-lined baking sheet, and spread 1 tablespoon of softened butter all over it. Next, add about 1/3 of the prepared filling to the circle and gently spread it around on top of the butter. Place another circle of dough on top of this one, and repeat the butter and filling steps. Add the third circle of dough, and repeat again with the remaining filling. Place the last circle of dough on top, but do not add butter or filling to it. The shape may not be exactly circlular anymore, so use a pizza cutter or a sharp knife to create a more perfect circle, trimming the ends.
  • Place a 3″ wide glass or bowl in the center of the dough to create an indented circle in the dough (do not push all the way through the dough). Using a pizza slicer or sharp knife, cut the dough into 16 equal strips, outward from the circle. Using two hands, grab two strips at a time, and twist them away from each other, twice. Bring the ends of the dough pieces together and pinch the ends to seal them. Repeat with the remaining 14 strips of dough. Cover the star bread with a clean towel and let it rest for 20 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350° F. Brush the bread lightly with the egg and milk wash, using a pastry brush. Place the baking sheet in the oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the bread is puffed up and lightly golden brown all over. If after 20 minutes the bread is starting to brown too much on the edges, lightly place a sheet of tinfoil over the bread. Remove the bread from the oven and allow it to cool for 5 minutes, before dusting it lightly with the lemon-y powdered sugar. Enjoy!