Sunday, March 15, 2009


I was playing around online this weekend and saw a recipe for Kolaches. I was curious about them because I had seen a recipe for Kolaches in Rebecca Rather's, The Pastry Queen cook book The first comment on the blogger's site mentioned The Pastry Queen cook book and I took this to mean I HAD to make these babies for breakfast Saturday morning. So at 10pm Friday night I got started making the dough.

When I told Alex I was making this recipe he told me it was a Polish recipe his family used to make when he was a kid. I told him the recipe said it was a Czech recipe so we agreed to call it an Eastern European recipe. It is fun to find family history in food!

The original recipe says it yield 16 to 18 buns, but I have found these recipes make nearly double what the recipe says it does so I halved the recipe. I have included the full recipe...but I am warning you in advance!

2 cups milk
1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/2 cup luke warm water (110 to 115 degrees F)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoons salt
8 1/2 cups all purpose flour
Peach Filling:
2 cups pitted, chopped peaches
1 cup good quality peach jam - we used my spiced peach jam
Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
To make the dough: Warm the milk in a medium saucepan set over medium heat until it begins to steam and form a skin; do not boil. cool for 10 to 15 minutes until it registers 110 to 115 degrees F on a candy thermometer. Dissolve the yeast in the luke warm water and let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes. Melt the butter. Let cool for 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, salt, and melted butter. Add the cooled milk and yeast mixture. Gradually add the flour to the batter, 2 cups at a time. User your hands or a wooden spoon to mix the flour with the wet ingredients. Keep adding the flour until it is completely incorporated and the dough begins to hold together. use a light touch; don't pound or overwork the dough or you'll get tough kolaches. The dough will be sticky, moist, and light.
Lightly grease a large bowl with vegetable oil. Transfer the dough to the bowl, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let it rise in a warm, draft free place until doubled in size, 1 or 2 hours (a dent should remain when the dough is touched lightly). Leaving the dough in the bowl, punch it down until it deflates. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

I am not a born baker and I am a VERY slow learner. See this picture. This is what my dough looked like the next morning. It didn't rise at all for me in the 1 1/2 I let it rise in a warm oven. I was worried I destroyed the recipe because I am not friendly with yeast...but the recipe is VERY forgiving. Thank goodness!!!

For the peach filling: combine 2 cups pitted, chopped peaches with 1 cup good quality peach jam in a medium bowl.

Grease a 12 by 17 inch baking sheet with butter or cooking spray. With lightly oiled fingertips, shape the dough into 2 1/2 inch-diameter balls, about the size of small limes. arrange the balls evenly on the baking pan.

To fill the kolaches, user your thumb or finger to make a generous indentation in the middle of each dough ball. mount about 1 heaping teaspoonful of peach filling in the indentation. Cover the rolls with a clean tea towel and let the rolls rise in a warm, draft free place until almost doubled in size. About 1 hour. THIS is where the recipe was forgiving of me. I put the kolaches in a warm oven and the DID double in size.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

To make the streusel topping: user your hands or a food processor to mix the flour, sugar, and butter until crumbly. Scatter the topping over the kolaches just before baking.

Bake the kolaches until lightly browned on top 25 to 30 minutesCook the Kolaches for 20 minutes before serving.

Rebecca Rather includes several variations to this recipe at the end of the recipe. Once of those variations is for cheese-filled Kolaches. I used a combination of the cheese and peach filling for my Kolaches.

For cheese-filled Kolaches: combine 1 14-ounce carton dry-curd cottage cheese (I used cream cheese) with 1/4 cup sugar, the grated zest of 1 lemon, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 2 egg yolks.

This recipe was pretty dang good. I liked it because it sounds pretty decadent, but it turned out to be a great combination of sweet and bread. Alex LOVED these babies!!!!


imjacobsmom said...

I used to make these with my polish Gramma and we flattened the ball into a square shape and used your peach, raspberry, cream cheese or a poppyseed filling. Then brought the corners up to meet in the middle and baked on a baking sheet. Mmmm! She baked them or a poppyseed roll, or an apple strudel all the time. ~ Robyn

Jen said...

I am so happy to see you blogging again! Yippee!

Megan said...

This looks really good. Good job!

Joie de vivre said...

I missed this post a few weeks ago! Hope you're doing well!

Bobbi Hospitality Savant said...

Hello, May I post your link on my facebook group page for The Bohemian regarding MY FAVE red all stars wearing baker Rebecca Rather and this czech treat? I make my Kolaches with her recipe, have since I saw it in 2003 Savour mag, here at my bed and breakfast. I usually save them for a crowd, well, you know why. I found your description resembles what I encountered early on and still sometimes! I always have trouble with that first rise? Anywhoo, I've been getting requests for the recipe and it is so darn long, and you had such helpful comments. Plus I love introducing people to things I find helpful, and this entry is, plus brokenyolks is to cute a name not to share!

rubybean77 said...

Hi Bobbi, you are more than welcome to post a link to my site. Thanks for the advertising. :)