Kalács is a Hungarian sweet bread popular during Easter. There are a few different variations and shapes. This particular bread, Húsvéti Kalácskoszorú, is formed into a wreath (circle) and sliced to show off the filling. It can also be a braided instead of sliced. Often, the center of the wreath is decorated with dyed Easter eggs.
I rolled the dough into a large rectangle, brushed the top with butter, and spread an even layer of the walnut filling over the butter. I rolled up the rectangle and brought the ends together to form a circle. I then cut 1 inch thick slices around the circle and gently turned each slice on its side.
I used a sweetened walnut filling, but poppy seed is also popular.
If desired, the top can be sprinkled with pearl or brown sugar after brushing with the egg wash.
Húsvéti Kalácskoszorú (Hungarian Easter Wreath) Recipe
Adapted from MarzipArt
Húsvéti Kalácskoszorú (Hungarian Easter Wreath)
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 250 milliliters (1 cup) milk lukewarm (105-115 degrees F)
- 500 grams (~3 1/2 cups) bread flour
- 50 grams (3 1/2 tablespoons) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- zest from 1/2 lemon or orange
- 150 grams (10 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons) unsalted butter, melted
- 50 grams (3 tablespoons) unsalted butter melted
- 200 grams (7 ounces) walnuts, finely chopped
- 100 grams (1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons) granulated sugar
- 1 egg for topping
Sprinkle yeast over milk and allow to sit for a minute before stirring to combine. Let sit until frothy, 5-10 minutes.
In the bowl of a large food processor fitted with a dough blade or a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, seeds from vanilla bean, and lemon zest. Mix in butter and milk with yeast until dough comes together. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough until smooth and elastic. Oil a large bowl and add the dough, turning to coat. Cover and allow to rest until doubled, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 435 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or lightly grease. In a medium bowl, combine walnuts and granulated sugar.
On a floured surface, roll dough into a rectangle, about 15 inches by 12 inches. Brush with melted butter. Spread evenly with walnuts and sugar. Roll up the rectangle long side to long side.
Transfer the roll to the prepared baking sheet seam side down. Push together the ends, pinching the dough together, to form a circle. Make about 1 inch thick slices around the circle about 3/4 of the way towards the center. Gently turn each slice on its side in the same direction.
In a small bowl, beat the egg until well combined with a tablespoon of water. Brush over entire surface of the bread. Allow to rest for 10 minutes.
Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, 20-30 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before transferring off of baking sheet.