Züpfe - Swiss Bread

Last night I got together with some lovely friends for a light dinner party. The hostess made a delicious cold soup that had us guessing as to the main ingredient (it was GRAPES!). My contribution was bread and as one friend said "she made it from scratch!" In one of those lovely coincidences, I had been talking with a Swiss expat friend and bread came up and he told me how he likes to make this traditional Swiss bread. Now this was rather unexpected from my bachelor guy friend, but we made a deal: if he figured out how to translate the recipe to English, I would make. So on Thursday, a recipe appeared in my inbox. I strayed quite a bit from it and was a bit worried. It smelled delicious baking, then cutting into it...it looked fine, was done inside, then biting into it...it was delicious! Very yeasty and dense but not heavy. Sigh of relief - success.

1/2 kg bread flour
4 Tbsp butter, melted
1 cup almond milk
1/2 Tbsp dried yeast
½ tsp sugar
2-3 tsp salt

1) Pour the flour into a large bowl, mixing out any lumps. Make a hollow in the center.
2) Dissolve yeast in cold milk, add sugar and salt.
3) Add milk mixture and melted butter to the flour. Mix in well and knead until it comes together. Continuing kneading for about two minutes.
4) Cover with cloth, leave to rest for one hour in a warm place. (This I did, and then popped it in the refrigerator overnight.)
5) When ready to bake, divide into two pieces and roll into snake-like strands. Make an X with the strands, folding the top two down to have four strands. Braid together. (Google reveals some lovely picture diagrams for this. I used my new-found knowledge of four-piece braiding learned through countless hours of Pinterest perusal.

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