Last week I made Greek Celebration Bread. Right on the heels of my nephew Keegan’s birth it seemed appropriate.  I went ahead and made Christopsomos, which is a variety generally reserved for Christmas… but  I made it for two reasons: I like fruit in bread and I wanted to try shaping bread.

Artos (the proper name for Greek Celebration Bread) has wonderful things in it like nutmeg and cinnamon and allspice. Honey.  Olive oil.  Almond extract and orange zest.  Beautiful stuff.

I started with a poolish, which grew and grew and grew.  I was only supposed to use 1 cup but I used the whole thing. OOPS. In fact, I didn’t even realize it until JUST now.  Bread is so forgiving 🙂  This is what poolish looks like:

Poolish

Yum.  Flour, Water, Yeast.  But so much potential in those few ingredients!

After that I mixed up all the spices I was using and mixed it up.

Doesn’t it look awesome?

Kneaded and kneaded and kneaded…

kneading

Justin took the picture for me. I never add enough flour initially so end up adding quite a bit throughout the kneading process. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing… but I think it works out OK. At least so far!! So I’ll spare the gory details, but I messed up on this a lot. I forgot the milk (actually, I remembered, but the boys drank it all and I had to send Justin to the store in a frantic hurry) and then I forgot to add the fruits until after it had risen for about an hour. Did I mention that I’m really glad that bread is forgiving?

prebake

So this is what it looked like before I threw it in the oven… it smelled amazing within just a few minutes. It took FOREVER to bake though. It was supposed to take about 40 minutes but it took close to an hour and a half. I pulled it out and measured the temperature several times but it just kept inching up slooowwwlly.

But finally…. after what seemed like hours… IT WAS DONE.

DONE BREAD

I couldn’t eat it until I got to Magnolia so that I could share it with Jake and Emilie. We broke bread together to celebrate their baby… and to celebrate me baking bread! The colors are beautiful of the bread. Wanna see? Of course you do!

Everyone raved about it. Said it was delicious. It was tasty, but I think next time I’d like to up the spices a bit. And remember the milk. And remember to mix in the fruit. And add the correct amount of poolish. Did I mention I love bread that’s forgiving?

I’ll close this out with a picture of me enjoying the bread…while holding my beautiful nephew 🙂

Me and Keegan

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