Grandma's Golden Babka Bread

Gloria Piantek, West Lafayette, Indiana

~~~~~~ 2021 National Festival of Breads Adult Division ~~~~~

Honorable Mention: Traditional Breads Category

"I created this Golden Babka Bread, thanks to my grandma’s jotted notes and heavenly inspiration.”



2 ½ - 2 ¾ cups KING ARTHUR® Unbleached All-Purpose Flour, divided 
1 (¼ ounce) package RED STAR® Platinum Superior Baking Yeast®
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
¾ cup warm water (120°F - 130°F)
1 large egg, beaten
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese


½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
¼ cup sesame seeds
¼ cup unsalted sunflower seeds
¼ cup pumpkin seeds
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup grated Monterey Pepper Jack cheese


1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
1 - 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil, optional


  1. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle, combine 1 ¾ cups flour, yeast, turmeric, garlic powder, onion powder and salt. Set aside.
  2. Microwave water on high heat for about 30 seconds or until 120°F - 130°F. Beat warm water into flour mixture; add egg and beat 5 minutes to form a very soft dough. Scrape dough down. 
  3. Switch to the dough hook and mix in Parmesan cheese. Gradually add enough flour until dough forms a soft, but not sticky, dough. 
  4. Place dough in greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover; let rise until puffy, 45 - 60 minutes.
  5. For filling: In a bowl, stir together onion powder, garlic powder, rosemary, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and oil until seeds are coated. Set aside.
  6. Deflate dough; on a lightly floured surface roll dough into 12" x 16" rectangle. Leaving ½" border, sprinkle Parmesan cheese and Monterey Pepper Jack cheese over dough; pat cheese into dough. Carefully spread on seed mixture and pat into dough. Starting at the long edge, roll the dough into a 16" log, sealing edges. Lightly stretch into a 24" - 25" log; place seam-side down on a large parchment lined cookie sheet. To make cutting easier, cover and chill the log 10 - 15 minutes.
  7. With sharp serrated knife, cut the log lengthwise in half; turn halves with filling-side up. The exposed filling may open slightly, so place the logs close together. 
  8. To shape wreath: Place logs to form an “X”, keeping filling-side up. Starting at the center, twist one half of the log over and under the first log, keeping the filling-side up. Twist the remaining dough in the same way, forming a braid with filling partially exposed. Shape into a 9" - 10" ring; seal ends. Tuck loose seeds into top of ring. Cover lightly with plastic wrap; let rise in warm place until puffy, 45 - 60 minutes.
  9. Near the end of the rise, preheat oven to 375°F. Whisk together egg and water; carefully brush on wreath. Bake 22 - 28 minutes or until golden brown and internal temperature registers 200°F - 205°F. Remove bread to cooling rack. If desired, brush bread with olive oil and cool before slicing.

Yield: 1 loaf, 24 slices.

NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING (1 SLICE, 34g): 110 calories, 45 calories from fat, 5g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 10mg cholesterol, 150mg sodium, 12g total carbohydrate, 1g dietary fiber, 0g sugars, 4g protein, 31mcg folate, 1mg vitamin C, 1mg iron.

Grandma's Golden Babka Bread |