Betty Newman's Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Babka Recipe 
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Betty Newman's Cinnamon Raisin Walnut Babka


This is Betty Newmanís (a San Francisco food writer for the Jewish Bulletin of Northern California) recipe for a Babka full of old-fashioned goodness. It calls for cinnamon, walnuts, and white or golden raisins. An optional tablespoon of lemon or orange rind added to the dough gives a pleasant taste to the cake. For those who observe Kashrut, the Babka recipe will fit into either a dairy or meat meal. Leftover Babka (if any) can be thickly sliced and toasted for breakfast.

Ingredients

4 Cups Unbleached flour

1 pkg Dry yeast

2/3 cup Sugar

1/2 cup Margarine or butter

1 cup Water (warm)

1 tablespoon Grated lemon peel

2 Eggs (whole)

1 teaspoon Salt

Ingredients for the filling

1/2 cup Brown sugar

1/2 cup White raisins

1/2 cup Chopped walnuts

4 tablespoons Margarine or butter

2 tablespoons Cinnamon

In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup (65 grams) of the warm water. Stir in 1 teaspoon of the sugar and let stand 10 minutes (until foamy).

Add remaining ingredients (butter is to be melted first), blending in 1-1/2 cups (375 grams) flour. Add rest of flour, half cup (125 grams) at the time until mixture holds together - you may need a little more flour than listed above to achieve this result. An electric mixer with a dough hook may be used.

On a lightly floured board, knead dough until smooth and elastic, 10 to 15 minutes. Cover with a damp towel and refrigerate overnight or let rise at room temperature for about 1-1/2 hours, until double in bulk. If refrigerated, bring to room temperature (depending on conditions, this may take up to 4-1/2 hours).

Roll dough on floured board to about 1/4-inch (8 mm) thick rectangle of about 10 by 18 inches (25 by 45 cm).

Combine filling ingredients. Brush dough with melted butter or margarine and spread filling evenly over dough. Roll up, forming one long cylinder.

Grease a 9-1/2 inch Bundt pan, or other tube pan and place the dough in it, pinching the two ends together.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius) or 325 degrees Fahrenheit (162 degrees Celsius) if you are using bakeware with a dark or colored exterior. Place the Babka inside and bake it for about 50 minutes or until the aroma becomes irresistible and the Babka is golden brown. (For a softer crust, brush top with egg wash before baking.)

After baking, remove the Babka from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Take it out of the pan and place it on a wire rack. Let it cool completely before serving. Wrap leftovers tightly with plastic wrap for storage at room temperature. For longer storage, you can freeze the Babka, tightly sealed in a plastic bag.

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