Spring has FINALLY sprung in Chicago and I am loving it! I am definitely a warmer temperature type of girl…I love me some winter, but only for the month of December/part of January. Then please, mother nature, it can be warm again. You might be laughing at me right now, shaking your head and saying “girl, you moved to the WINDY CITY”. Yea…. I know. I also am overly optimistic about life and always think that it won’t be as bad as other people say…..well Chicago…you win this round. Chicago wind can be described in only one way: “It’s a bitch slap that you can’t slap back” Yes, I have coined that statement and as long as you give me credit feel free to use it as well!
Sooooo back to spring. Spring means light and fluffy and..LEMON! It just feels right. So I present to you…Lemon Poppy Seed Twists.
Surprisingly easier to make than expected, although you must make this dough a day in advance (or give yourself at least 4 hours of prep time for the dough– I did mine overnight)
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
1. Warm the water and milk in a saucepan over low heat until the temperature reaches between 100-110 degrees. Remove from heat and sprinkle packet of yeast with a pinch of sugar over the mixture and set aside until foamy, about 5 minutes. **Letting it reach this temperature is crucial because it activates the yeast!**
2. Whisk the melted buttre, egg yolk and vanilla into the mixture until completely combined. In a separate bowl mix together flour, sugar and salt. Form a well in the center and add the yeast mixture to the center. Using a wooden spoon mix together the mixture, it will be a slightly sticky dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead until soft and elastic, then shape into a ball.
3. Brush a bowl with butter and add the dough, turning to coat lightly with butter. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to light rise until about doubled in size- about 1. 5 hours. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead again to release any air, then re-form the ball and return to the bowl. Using plastic wrap that is greased with butter lightly cover over the ball. Cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours to overnight.
To Make The Twists:
- flour, for dusting
- 1 Batch of dough you just made!
- 1 cup canned poppy seed filling
For The Glaze:
- 1.5 cups powdered sugar
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsp milk
- 1/5 tsp vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
1. On a floured surface, roll out the dough to a 10 x 18 inch rectangle. Spread the poppy seed feeling over the dough evenly, leaving a one inch border. On one of the long ends, brush with water (this will be the “clean” end). Tightly roll the dough into an 18 inch log, rolling towards the clean border.
2. Using a knife cut log into 12 even pieces. With damp hands, pull each circle into a long oval, and twist in the middle to form a figure eight. Repeat for all 12. Put on tray and lightly cover with plastic wrap for 20 minutes to let rise.
3. While you wait, preheat the oven to 350. After 20 minutes, remove the plastic wrap and reform 8’s if needed. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes (mine were 22). Transfer off the tray to let cool.
4. Make the glaze: Coming ingredients into a microwave safe bowl, mixing well- no lumps! Microwave for 45 seconds and mix well until smooth again. Brush each twist with the glaze (I was very generous, the glaze makes a lot!) Enjoy!