Savory Babka with Mushrooms & Truffle Paste 

Dear Sourdoughmaniac,

Are you up for an absolutely mouthwateringly delicious plant-based recipe that will knock your socks off all year round?

Then you’ve come to the right place, especially if you are a fan of truffles and button mushrooms. Every time I make this recipe, which you can also find in my second book Sweet and Savory Souroughmania, I can’t wait for it to finally come out of the oven. And do you know what’s the best part about this particular babka? It tastes the best when served sliiightly warm, making it perfect for those of us who are impatient to start eating. 

So, if you can’t stay zen because you are too excited to start kneading, and you’ve followed my advice from the previous post and prepared you stiff started in advance, let’s jump right into it and get starte(r)d. 

P.S.: if you aren’t a fan of truffles or button mushrooms, don’t fret! Use the recipe for the main dough and fill your babka with whichever combination fits your taste the best! I suggest some Pesto Genovese and pistachios. 

Step 1:
Mix 10g of active, bubbly regular starter with 10g water and 5g sugar. Add in 25g of white all-purpose flour and stir thoroughly. Then knead the mixture until it forms a dough ball. Place into an air tight container and leave at room temperature until it doubles in size (10-12h).
Step 2:
Dissolve 10g of sugar in 15g of water. Tear the doubled stiff starter into pieces and add it to the sugar water. Stir then add in 35g of white all-purpose flour and stir again. Finally, knead the mixture until it forms a dough ball. Place into an air tight container and leave at room temperature until it triples in size (8-10h).

For the main dough:

  • 250g of all-purpose white or T500 flour (83%)
  • 50g of wholegrain white flour or wholegrain spelt four (13%)
  • 170g of water (56%)
  • 5g salt (2%)
  • 20g of olive oil (6.7%)

    For the filling:
  • 100g truffle paste
  • 250g button mushrooms
  • 1 small onion
  • 4 table spoons of olive oil
  • 3 stalks of parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

    More olive oil for the pre-bake wash

    Mix the salt into the water. Then tear the stiff starter into pieces and add it to the salt water. Stir to partially dissolve it.
    Slowly pour the liquid mixture to the flour and begin kneading. Leave the 20g of olive oil for later.
    Once you’ve kneaded a supple, workable dough, slowly add in the oil in at least 2 steps. Knead until the dough fully absorbs the oil before you add in more.
    TIP: use a kitchen mixer to make this process easier
    Leave the dough at room temperature to bulk rise for approximately 4-5 hours or until it has doubled in size. Then you can store the dough in the fridge overnight or continue with the baking process.

    Chop the small onion into pieces and thinly slice the mushrooms.
    First sauté the onions on the olive oil until it becomes translucent then add in the mushrooms and sauté them too.
    Make sure to add the seasoning last, once the mushrooms are already properly sautéed.

    Roll out the dough into a rectangular shape. The dough should be around 3mm thick.
    Spread a thin layer of the truffle paste all over it then add the mushrooms on top. Finally, chop the parsley and sprinkle it on top as well.
    Gently roll the dough into a roll, then position it with the seam up.
    Cut the roll length wise along the seam so you get two long strips.
    Grab the two strips and braid them one over the other to form a tight, twisted “rope”.
    Move the babka into an oiled, buttered, or parchment paper lined tin, place the tin into a plastic bag and let the babka proof at room temperature until it doubles in size.

    Bake the babka in a preheated oven at 200 °C or 392°F for 45-50 minutes (or until nice and golden brown) without steam.
    Before baking, give the babka a wash of olive oil.

    Mmmmm I can practically taste it just by staring at the photo! I think it might be time to run to the store to grab some mushrooms and truffle paste.  Yummy!

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