The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

A Rose for Christmas

breadsong's picture

A Rose for Christmas

Happy holidays everyone!

This is a take on Guro’s lovely Caucasian Bread – a Christmas version, colored red, with sun-dried tomato pesto
for the filling :^)

There was a lovely round-up of Roses in this post (so many pretty breads featured!, which got me thinking about savory fillings and flavors for this bread).


Here's the recipe for the sun-dried tomato pesto (makes more than you will need for the rose bread):
Place in food processor and process until you have a smooth paste:
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes (preserved in oil, but drained)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup sliced almonds
2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
1/8 to 1/4 cup grated asiago or parmesan cheese

Add 1 Tablespoon olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 3 drops Tabasco sauce, and 1/2 cup real mayonnaise.
Process again until smooth. Adjust salt to taste. Transfer to bowl, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
The recipe called for a bit more olive oil, but I held back, not wanting to make the pesto too thin (concerned it might run out during proofing and baking).

This is my interpretation of Guro's formula. I kept hydration to 63% as I liked how that worked when making
Julia's rose bread, and reduced the yeast as I was going for a longer, overnight fermentation.
I used half of the dough to make the rose, and saved the other half to make something else.

Flour counter; roll dough to 15"x20".
Cover dough with 190g of sun-dried tomato pesto, leaving a clean border (about 1/4").

Roll up from long side;  brush flour off of dough as you roll

Cut in half lengthwise (used a serrated knife).   
Fold open to expose the layers. Pick up one piece and lay over the second piece, forming an 'X' shape, keeping the cut sides facing up.

Twist the pieces to form one long rope  Coil the rope to form the rose

Proof for about one hour. Some of the olive oil might leak out during proofing

Bake at 350F for 25-30 minutes, or until 195F internal temperature is reached, turning loaf for even browning or covering with foil to prevent overbrowning, if needed.

 a colorful, flavorful crumb! :^)


Thank you, Guro! This was a fun and very delicious bread to make. It had the aroma of a really good pizza,
while it was cooling.
I was regretting not having any fresh oregano to add to either the dough, or the pesto!
Something to look forward to, for next time, although the bread had wonderful flavor as is.

Happy baking everyone!
:^) breadsong

Submitted to YeastSpotting :^)



breadsong's picture

I tried this with a cinnamon roll filling once. It was delicious.
The dough was placed in a heart-shaped springform pan after shaping 

 A rose version of this would be very pretty!
Thanks, and happy baking,
:^) breadsong


Knead2Know's picture

This was my go at a sweet version yesterday. I used Bertinet's sweet dough recipe and a simple sugar, butter and cinnamon filling. 

I dusted it with icing sugar to serve and it looked lovely.

If it is your first go with the shape I would cut the hydration a little bit to make it a bit easier to shape at the end.

breadsong's picture

That is so, so beautiful! :^)

Windischgirl's picture

We ended up with a basil version on Saturday, for my son's birthday--it disappeared!  I made it without the overnight rest and the dough was rather slack (I think the pesto also made the dough a bit slippery).

The second half of the dough did have a rest overnight in a cold garage and I filled it with a mixture of brown sugar, cinnamon, and the last of the butter in the house (you can imagine I heard about that one!) yesterday.  The overnight rest did make the dough a bit easier to the filling was a little firmer.

We ended up baking the dough at 375-400F for more than 30 min to get the proper browning--internal temperature was 195F.

I had a bite of the cinnamon rose before that was inhaled by my family too.

Now to get hubby to download the pics for me!

breadsong's picture

Thanks for the update :^)              
Glad everyone there enjoyed them, savory and sweet!
:^) breadsong

sgregory's picture

Here is my sweet version.  Using equal parts of butter, almonds, and brown sugar.  Food processed until it was smooth.  Added some sliced almonds on top to finish it off for baking.   Very nice flavor.  It was rich and complex without being overly sweet.

breadsong's picture

Double yum, almond and caramel... you've got me thinking, maybe some sort of salted caramel filling might be possible for this bread.
I've tried salted caramel as a glaze on top of bread, but incorporating it into a filling... that's a lovely thought!
Thanks so much for the photo, and inspiration - your bread looks absolutely delicious.
:^) breadsong

dabrownman's picture

My apprentices version  of Breadsong's Christmas Rose.  A sun dried tomato rope split, with a basil rope split, then one split each braided together to make (2) red and green ropes then formed into a Christmas Rose .  I made the ropes from the long side instead of the short side by mistake so the rose is a little Frisbee like - hopefully it will puff itself up some before the oven  heat arrives:-)


breadsong's picture

Hi dabrownman :^)
I knew your rose was going to be something really special! - *love* the colors and how you combined the flavors.
You and your apprentice did a really lovely job - this bread looks so festive.
So happy to see what you've made and thanks for sharing the photo!
:^) breadsong

hanseata's picture

A really festive bread for Christmas! And a great inspiration.

Happy New Year!


breadsong's picture

Thank you, Karin. Wishing you the very best for the New Year, too!
Can't wait to see what's on your 2013 baking list...any breads you've got picked out will certainly be beautiful,
and interesting.
:^) breadsong