Betty Newman's Cinnamon Babka

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This traditional recipe calls for cinnamon, walnuts, and white or golden raisins. An optional tablespoon of lemon or orange rind can be added to the dough to provide a flavor variation.
  • PrepN/A |
  • TotalN/A |
  • Serves8


    • 4 cups (1000 g) unbleached flour
    • 1 pk (7g) dry yeast
    • 2/3 cups (160g) sugar
    • 1/2 cup (120g) margarine or butter
    • 1 cup (250g) water (warm)
    • 1 tablepsoon (15g) grated lemon peel
    • 2 eggs
    • 1 teaspoon (8g) salt
  • Filling:
    • 1/2 cup (120g) brown sugar
    • 1/ w cup (85 hite raisins
    • 1/2 cup (60g) chopped walnuts
    • 4 tablespoons (60g) margerine or butter
    • 2 tablespoons (40g) cinnamon


In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup (65 grams) of the warm water. Stir in 1 teaspoon of the sugar and let stand 10 minutes (until foamy).

Add remaining ingredients (butter is to be melted first), blending in 1-1/2 cups (375 grams) flour. Add rest of flour, half cup (125 grams) at the time until mixture holds together - you may need a little more flour than listed above to achieve this result. An electric mixer with a dough hook may be used.

On a lightly floured board, knead dough until smooth and elastic, 10 to 15 minutes. Cover with a damp towel and refrigerate overnight or let rise at room temperature for about 1-1/2 hours, until double in bulk. If refrigerated, bring to room temperature (depending on conditions, this may take up to 4-1/2 hours).

Roll dough on floured board to about 1/4-inch (8 mm) thick rectangle of about 10 by 18 inches (25 by 45 cm).

Combine filling ingredients. Brush dough with melted butter or margarine and spread filling evenly over dough. Roll up, forming one long cylinder.

Grease a 9-1/2 inch Bundt pan, or other tube pan and place the dough in it, pinching the two ends together.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius) or 325 degrees Fahrenheit (162 degrees Celsius) if you are using bakeware with a dark or colored exterior. Place the Babka inside and bake it for about 50 minutes or until the aroma becomes irresistible and the Babka is golden brown. (For a softer crust, brush top with egg wash before baking.)

After baking, remove the Babka from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. Take it out of the pan and place it on a wire rack. Let it cool completely before serving. Wrap leftovers tightly with plastic wrap for storage at room temperature. For longer storage, you can freeze the Babka, tightly sealed in a plastic bag.
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