I’ve seen photos of chocolate babka all over Pinterest, but then you look at the recipe and it says 14 hours to make it and so I always backed out. This time though, I didn’t, and I am so glad. First of all, it’s a lot of fun to make, even if it takes a while. I love making brad though, so I guess I am biased. Second, it’s delicious! Plus it’s so pretty. I mean just look at that.
There’s actually not a huge amount of hands-on time with this dough, there’s just a lot of letting it rest to rise. It rises three times, if I have that correct. Please please please though, just make this overnight. It will feel like it’s gone by a lot faster and the dough will be better developed. Note that it needs to stay in the refrigerator overnight though, I forgot to do that (whoops, probably not good).
Once the dough has risen overnight, it’s really just about making the filling (which I made the day of) and the simple syrup, both of which are pretty easy. I ended up having way too much filling, just as a heads up, because if I put to much on it just squeezed out. One way to avoid this though is to refrigerate the filling just a little bit so it’s more firm. I still think my loaf was chocolatey enough though. Plus we kept the filling and slowly snacked on it, since it’s pretty much just a delicious homemade hot fudge.
Then, once every component is ready, it’s a lot of rolling, spreading, rolling again, cutting, twisting, folding, and baking! It sounds like a lot, I know, but I explained every step. Plus, come on, just look at that final result. It’s worth it. Happy baking!
Recipe adapted from New York Times Cooking