Now if you asked me for a guilty pleasure TV-wise, I’d have to say „The Great British Bake-Off“! I don’t know if there are shows like that outside of the British Islands, but it is basically a baking competition between hobby bakers. Every week they bake against each other to a different topic, ranging from breads over pies to cakes. They are baking their own as well as unknow recipes, and get judged by cake goddess Mary Berry and bread veteran Paul Hollywood (apparently these are their real names!). Every week a contestend gets eliminated, and at the end of the season a winner is crowned in a big finale.
Now PETA is hosting their second Great British Vegan Bake-Off at the moment. It is not televised nor are the bakers directly competing, but it is a virtual competition of scrummy vegan bakes. I was thinking a lot about what my entry this year could be (last year I went for the Salted Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting). At the end I decided for a sweet bread shaped and folded like a flower (kind of). I have seen this folding technique in a few German vegan Facebook groups (apparently it originated in a Thermomix cookbook, correct me if I’m wrong). It just makes for a very pretty optic and is also great for sharing with family and friends. The folding technique is not that hard either, once you know how it’s done. Now the recipes that I found for the flower cakes were a bit conventional (with pesto or sweet nut filling), so my better half suggested I should do an exotic filling. Good call, I went or coconut, mint and lime (if there are no kids around, add a shot of rum!). This bread is divine! It smells fantastic and is a perfect summer cake. The coconut milk makes a nice moist cake and the filling is refreshing, yet sweet.
Here is the recipe for the Coconut, Mint & Lime bread:
600 g flour
2 packages of dry active yeast (14 g)
pinch of salt
4 tablespoons of vanilla infused sugar
2 tablespoons of melted coconut oil
320 ml / 11 fl oz coconut milk
2/3 cup dissected coconut
leaves from 7-8 stalks of mint (about one cup)
3 tablespoons sugar
zest of one organic lemon and 2 organic limes
juice of one lime
2 heaped tablespoons soft coconut oil (not melted, just room temperature)
In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients, then add the coconut oil and milk. Mix thoughroughly and knead into an elastic dough. I kneaded the dough for about 5 minutes on a floured surface, because I enjoy giving the dough (an my arms) a little workout. Then put the dough ball back into the bowl, cover with a clean dish towel and let it prove for about 1 hour in a warm spot. Meanwhile, have a cup of tea, take a personality test on buzzfeed and prepare the filling. For the filling, combine all the ingredients in a mixer and pulse until you get a pesto consistency. This should only take a minute or so You should have about 6 heaped tablespoons of filling.
Next, after the dough has about doubled it size, divide the dough into three equal pieces. I weighted my dough for that, it came out to be about 1kg, and I divided it into balls of about 330 gramms. Roll the first dough ball into a round of the size of your round cake tin (mine is 28 cm/ 11 inch). Spread about 3 heaped tablespoons of the filling on the dough round. Put aside, and roll out the second dough ball into the 28cm/ 11 inch round. Put on top of the first one, and spread the remaining 3 tablespoons of filling on the second layer. Finally, roll out the third dough ball into a round and put it on top as a third layer.
Then take a sharp and big kitchen knife and make your marks (do not cut at this point, but only mark). You want 16 pieces of the same size, so make a marking by halving the cake, then quartering, then 8th, then 16th. Then you can cut, but leave about 3 cm from the middle part that you do not cut. Make the cuts until you have 16 pieces (the photos might help you with my explanation). Then take two pieces next to each other and twist them twice inside/facing each other. Press their ends together and tuck them a bit under to form a neat end. Proceed with the other pieces until all of them are braided.
Then let the bread prove for another half an hour. Pre-heat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5. I placed my bread into the cake tin, others bake it on a baking tray. Put the bread in once the oven has reached 190°C. Leave in there for about 20 minutes, but check after about 15 minutes. This bread is baked fairly quickly. It is done once it is golden brown. Take it out of the oven and let it cool on a wire rack. Enjoy warm or cold, best with an iced chai tea or iced coconut coffee.