Thursday, December 12, 2013

Hot Chocolate Pull Apart Bread

Ok..I made a pretty darn good Cardamom and Orange Pull-Apart Bread the other day. In my usual fashion, I've become obsessed. What other flavors can I pull apart? Peaches and Cream? Bacon and Egg? Let me see...this is a Christmas about a Hot Chocolate Pull-Apart Bread?!! Methinks Santa will approve.

Don't let the fact that this is a yeast bread scare you away...truly, it's not that hard, especially if you use a stand mixer. Come on. Give it a try. Your family will love you....

Hot Chocolate Pull-Apart Bread

1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
3-3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup dark cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (2.5 oz) package instant yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 egg, room temperature, slightly beaten
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup walnuts or pecans
1 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted and divided
1 cup marshmallow crème
4-6 tablespoons half/half, divided
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Heat the milk 1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup sugar in a small saucepan until butter is melted and sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat. Let cool until temperature is about 110 degrees F (like bathwater warm).

In a medium bowl, whisk together 3 cups of the flour, salt, and cocoa.

In a large mixing bowl, combine milk mixture with yeast, egg, and 2 cups of the flour mixture; beat well. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. When the dough has just pulled together, turn it onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes. (Alternately, just use the dough hook on your mixer and let the mixer knead the dough for about five minutes)

Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a clean damp towel. Allow dough to rise until double, about 1 hour. In the mean time, process the brown sugar, nuts, cinnamon, and chocolate chips in a food processor until the mixture is well blended , the nuts are ground, and the chocolate is coarsely chopped; set aside.

Use a pastry brush to butter two 8-inch loaf pans; preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Roll out one of the dough halves into a large (about 12X9 inch) rectangle.  Brush the dough with half of the melted butter. Sprinkle half of the nut mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 1/2 inch edge.  Use a sharp knife or a pizza cutter to cut the dough vertically into 4 strips, then horizontally into 6 strips.  Carefully, stack the strips 4 high. Place each stack of strips, cut side up, in a loaf pan. Sprinkle the top of the loaf with stray filling. Repeat with the other half of dough.

Cover the loaf pans loosely with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise for about 30 minutes, and then bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until browned. Cool for 10 minutes before carefully removing from pan. Glaze while warm.

For the glaze, warm 3-4 tablespoons of half/half and whisk into 1 cup marshmallow crème.  Drizzle over the warm loaves. If desired, whisk 1-2 tablespoons warm half/half into ½ cup chocolate chips and blend until smooth. Drizzle the chocolate over the marshmallow glaze.

I used foil pans...after glazing the bread, you can place it back in the pan to transport.

Don't have marshmallow creme? Go ahead and melt some mini-marshmallows with the half/half over low heat, whisking until smooth.

I can't stop thinking about more pull-apart flavors...what sounds good to you? Eggnog? Sweet Potato? Bratwurst with Sauerkraut?

Visit all the other Christmas Week Peeps for more Holiday Baking Goodness:

     Mini Sugar Cookie Houses aka Hot Chocolate Mug Perches by Cravings of a Lunatic
     Eggnog Cookie Truffles by The Weekend Gourmet
     Spiked Candy Cane Hot Chocolate by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks:
     Gingerbread Texas Sheet Cake with Lemon Frosting by Chocolate Moosey
     Swirl Cookies by Noshing With The Nolands
     Caramel Apples by My Catholic Kitchen
     Homemade Caramels by Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts
     Puff Pastry Ravioli Mince Pies by Food Lust People Love
     Mounds Brownie Cupcakes by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
     Hot Chocolate Pull Apart Bread by The Dutch Baker’s Daughter
     Sugared Grape and Phyllo Tart by See Aimee Cook
     Taffy Tan Fudge by Mom’s Test Kitchen
     Double Chocolate Pecan Cookies by Cooking In Stilettos
     Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Bread by Liv Life
     White Chocolate Candy Cane Fudge by Rants From My Crazy Kitchen
     Devil’s Food Cake Cookies by Try Anything Once Culinary
     Cinnamon Whiskey Balls by Home Cooking Memories
     Pumpkin Chiffon Pie by Jen’s Favorite Cookies
     Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Truffles by Cupcakes and Kale Chips
     Candy Cane Blossoms by Like Mother Like Daughter

Today's #ChristmasWeek giveaway comes courtesy of Swissmar. Le Cordon Bleu has been a worldwide leader in gastronomy and hospitality for over 100 years and are widely considered the guardian of French culinary technique. Swissmar now combines this culinary expertise with their own knowledge and brand recognition to introduce this fantastic new line.

The Le Cordon Bleu ceramic ovenware from Swissmar are all freezer safe, oven safe, dishwasher and microwave safe. The French-inspired Charmant Collection 5 qt. Rectangular Roaster has scalloped edges and is beautiful enough to go straight from oven to table! To enter to win a Swissmar Roaster, read the details and use the Rafflecopter below!

***This giveaway is for one Swissmar Charmant Collection 5 qt. Rectangular Roaster (winner's choice of color: blue, yellow, red, or white)! This giveaway is open to Continental US residents only . When the contest concludes, the winner will be chosen by random draw. The winner will be notified through e-mail and they will have 3 days to respond or another winner will be chosen.***

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***Disclaimer: This giveaway is being provided by Swissmar. #ChristmasWeek bloggers have not received product or been compensated as a part of this giveaway.***


  1. This bread looks amazing Cathy! I love this twist on the traditional. What a great Christmas morning treat.

  2. I love anything chocolate and you bread looks wonderful and chocolaty. Is it bad that I would love to eat this for breakfast?

  3. I must make this! My husband loves chocolate, I would probably make hot tamale pie first in this beautiful roaster.or maybe scalloped potatoes or lasagna or .........oh my so many things! Merry Christmas!

  4. I would love to make your hot chocolate bread in it!

  5. Love, love, love these loaves!! What a great idea for gift for the holidays too!!!

  6. Wow, what a marvelous version of pull apart bread! I must make my next loaf a chocolate one :)

  7. I request eggnog next. But this is so fabulous, I don't know if I need anything else. ;)

    Happy day #4!

  8. Oh!!! My family loves pull apart bread, but I've never done a version like this! Hot chocolate... brilliant!

  9. I could totally have this for breakfast on Christmas morning...YUM!

  10. I love anything chocolate! So I really want to try the Chocolate pull apart bread. Yummy!

  11. this bread looks & sounds wonderful! cant wait to try this recipe! TY!

  12. I want to run into my kitchen immediately and make this. This looks seriously gorgeous. I am speechless, and you know that never happens. Lol!

    Thanks again for joining us this week. xx

  13. I miss this until now, it sounds fabulous! I think I will make it soon, but for now I'm pinning it and posting it on Facebook!

  14. I would make roast veggies in this pan. This bread looks amazing!

  15. I also fell in love with this pull apart bread method...I made a good one with a little chocolate and espresso powder in between the layers :)