A couple weeks ago Holly and Natalie from The Modern Proper came over and we had an awesome little breakfast potluck together. They made these incredible shirred eggs with leeks, cream, fresh parsley, and red peppers, which I am still drooling over. It was so SOOOOO good and took them almost no time to make—I’m definitely adding them to my rotation of quick and tasty breakfasts! I decided to make a pastry, and put together this saffron star bread. I saw King Arthur Flour’s star bread recipe a month or so ago on Facebook and fell in love with the shape, but wanted to try to change it up a little with some other spices (namely saffron, cardamom, and nutmeg) and also simplified the dough ingredients a bit.
While the shape of this star bread looks suuuuuper fancy and complex, it’s actually really easy to form when you break it down into a few simple steps. Since I’m a visual learner, I decided to make a little stop-motion tutorial on it to help show you how to make it. I also wrote the instructions in the recipe below, too! Just as an FYI, I accidentally put the wrong cook time in the video (darn it!) it should be 20-25 minutes not 15 minutes. I’m going to be out of town the next few days and will be able to fix it when I am back at my home computer where the video file lives 🙂
The flavor of this star bread is *unreal*, guys. Think of a Swedish cardamom bun but in a giant, epic form with even fluffier dough and a hint of saffron and nutmeg to it. It goes without saying that this would make a pretty killer addition to any holiday table, but I would most DEFINITELY eat/make/inhale this any ol’ time of the year.
ALSO! I am opening pre-order sales for my Online Photography Course on December 1st, and you can get an email for 10% off if you sign up for my workshop mailing list here before that date. I’ve created a stand-alone photography, storytelling, & branding online course with hours of hands-on instructional video, 9 different lessons, and assignments to go along with each one. I’m laying out everything from camera settings, manipulating natural light, to post-processing in Adobe Lightroom, to recipe development, social media strategies, and writing for publications.
In full, the course includes:
- 9 separate video lessons with hands-on instruction from myself. The lessons will be broken down into:
- Lesson 1 Camera Settings
- Lesson 2 Lenses & Focal Lengths
- Lesson 3 Working with Natural Light
- Lesson 4 Styling + Storytelling
- Lesson 5 Social Media, Branding, & Business Strategy
- Lesson 6 Writing for Publication
- Lesson 7 Recipe Development
- Lesson 8 Post-Processing in Adobe Lightroom
- Lesson 9 Creating Cinemagraphs
- 9 hands-on assignment exercises corresponding to each lesson to help you put your newfound skills into practice.
- My exclusive e-book “On Food Styling, Photography, & Blogging”, which addresses all of the above in text-form (which means no need for excessive note-taking, yay!)
- Customizable calendar to help you put together a cohesive course plan that works for your schedule.
The release date is December 20th—huge thanks to my better half, Jeremy, for shooting and editing all of the video content for this, very lucky to have such a talented filmmaker for a husband! I am so happy to finally be able to share all of this information with you at a lower price point than my travel-based workshops and with a completely flexible schedule 😆 Hope to “see” you soon!!!
Saffron Star Bread
This is a beautiful and incredibly delicious pastry to add to your kitchen. It brings a lot of color and flavor to the holiday table, but is also really great to enjoy any other time of the year, too!
Saffron Star Bread
- 1/2 teaspoon teaspoon loose saffron threads
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup whole or 2% milk
- 2 teaspoon yeast
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup lukewarm water
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg whisked with 1 teaspoon whole milk (for egg wash)
- 4 ounces unsalted butter
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon flake sea salt (like fleur de sel)
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
Saffron Star Bread
For the saffron star bread, use a mortar pestle to crush together the sugar and saffron until the threads are broken into tiny pieces. Heat the milk in a small pot until hot but not boiling. Stir in saffron sugar mixture until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, allow to cool to lukewarm, then whisk in yeast and allow to sit at room temperature until yeast is dissolved, about 5 minutes.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine the flour, 1/2 cup of water, butter, vanilla extract, sugar, salt, and saffron milk at low speed until the dough comes together. Continue mixing until a soft smooth dough forms. You can do this by hand, as well, and just knead the dough. Transfer the dough to a greased bowl, cover, and let it rise for 60 minutes at room temperature out of direct sunlight.
On a clean and lightly floured working surface, divide the dough into four equal parts and shape into spheres. Cover and set aside to rise for 20 minutes.
While the dough is rising, you can prepare the cardamom filling by pureeing the butter, sugar, cardamom, nutmeg, salt, vanilla extract, and saffron threads in a blender or food processor until smooth. Set aside.
Take one of the dough balls and roll it out on a piece of parchment paper into a roughly 10-inch circle. Spread the surface with 1/3 of the cardamom butter, leaving a 1-inch border empty, then set it aside.
Take a second dough ball and roll it out onto a piece of parchment paper, then flip it upside down on top of the first sheet of dough, peeling off the top layer of parchment paper and pressing around the edges gently to seal the two layers of dough together. Spread 1/3 of the cardamom butter on the top layer of dough, leaving a 1-inch border empty, then repeat this process one more time so that you have three layers of buttered dough stacked on top of each other.
Roll out the fourth and final dough ball onto a piece of parchment paper, then flip it upside down on top of the third sheet of dough, peeling off the top layer of parchment paper and pressing around the edges gently to seal the two layers of dough together. (This top layer does not and will not have any butter on it.)
Place the 3" lid of a jar in the center of the circle as a guide, and cut the circle into 16 equally-sized slices, leaving the center 3" connected. Twist the slices in pairs away from each other. Then pinch the ends of each pair together. Set the star aside to rise for 40 minutes at room temperature out of direct sunlight.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Transfer the saffron star parchment paper onto a baking sheet and lightly brush the star with the egg wash. Bake in the oven until deeply golden and puffy, about 20 to 25 minutes.