NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — April showers bring may… baked goods?
All month long, Breads Bakery is hosting a celebration in honor of cheesecakes.
Baker Edan Leshnick stopped by to show us how to make their delectable cheesecake babka. Check the recipe out below:
Makes 4 babkas
For the dough:
170 grams (3/4 cup) whole milk
30 grams (3T) fresh yeast
650 grams (4 1/2 cups) all-purpose flour, sifted
2 large eggs, at room temperature
110 grams (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
120 grams (8 1/2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into cubes
For the cheesecake filling:
450g (2 cups) cream cheese, at room temperature
160g (1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons) ricotta, at room temperature
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
Zest of 1 lemon
140g (1 cup + 2 tablespoons) powdered sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
For the streusel:
56g (4 tablespoons) butter, at room temperature, cut into cubes
60g (5 tablespoons) granulated sugar
100g (3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon) all-purpose flour
Plus one egg, beaten, for egg wash
For the dough:
1. Pour the milk into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Break up the yeast
into the milk and dissolve it using your fingertips or a whisk. In order, add the sifted flour,
eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt, and half of the butter. Begin mixing at the lowest speed for 2
minutes. Increase the speed to medium and continue mixing for another 5 minutes,
scraping down the bowl as necessary until mixed together. The dough should begin to come
together but it will not be smooth.
2. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add the rest of the butter, cube by cube, only
adding more butter once the previous cube disappears into the dough. This process should
take 2 to 3 minutes. Once all of the butter is incorporated, turn off the mixer – the dough
should be smooth and elastic.
3. Lightly flour your work surface and turn the dough out onto the floured surface. Knead the
dough into a smooth ball.
4. Form the dough into a rectangle (measuring about 10 inches by 6 inches) and place on a tray.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 12 hours.
For the filling and streusel:
1. For the filling: by hand or with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together
the cream cheese and ricotta. Add the eggs slowly, then the vanilla and zest. Combine the
powdered sugar and cornstarch together first, then add to the cheese mixture until
2. Put the filling into a piping bag fitted with a ½” tip. (Alternatively, use a plastic zip-top bag
and cut a ½” hole from one corner.) Refrigerate.
3. For the streusel: by hand or with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the
butter and sugar until smooth. Then, add the flour all at once and mix just until it forms small
pebble-size pieces, scraping once in the middle if needed. Do not overmix. Set aside or
1. Lightly grease four 8 1/2-inch-by-4 1/2-inch loaf pans with nonstick baking spray. Lightly flour
a work surface and transfer the risen dough to the floured surface. Lightly flour a rolling pin
and roll the dough into a rectangle measuring about 44 inches by 9 inches. If the dough
shrinks back as you roll it out, cover it with a towel or plastic wrap for 5 minutes to let it rest
and then continue rolling again until it has reached the desired size.
2. Using a knife or pizza cutter, divide the dough in half lengthwise into two 4.5“-wide strips.
Then divide each strip into four equal sections. This should result in eight rectangles
approximately 4.5” x 11”.
3. Place the pieces in front of you with the long edges towards you. Working one rectangle at a
time, lightly brush or dab the edges with water. Pipe approximately 100g into the center of
the rectangle, leaving at least a 1” border on all sides.
4. Roll up the long edge of the dough over the filling and overlap with the far edge by about ½”
to make a filled tube. Pinch the ends closed so that the filling does not leak out.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for all other rectangles. You will have 8 filled tubes.
6. Cross two tubes, seam-down, to make an X. On the right side of the cross, twist the two
halves one or two more times, keeping seams down. Repeat on the left side. You should
have two tubes twisted together about five times, with the seams all on the bottom. Place
this carefully into your prepped loaf pan. Repeat with the remaining tubes.
Proofing and Baking:
1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
2. Cover the babkas lightly with a towel or place in a clean plastic bag, making sure the bag
doesn’t touch the surface of the dough. Set in a warm place until almost doubled in size, 2 to
2 1/2 hours. The dough should rise just over the edge of the loaf pan.
3. Once risen, gently brush the dough with the beaten egg, making sure not to let it pool. Break
the streusel into pebble-sized pieces and gently sprinkle a generous handful over the top of
4. Bake the babkas for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. Let the babkas cool completely
at room temperature before turning them out from their loaf pans.