Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Folar (Portugiese Easter Bread) - #BreadBakers

Oh don't look at the title like that. Yes, it is an Easter bread. Yes, Easter was over a week ago. What? You don't start planning your Easter bread basket a year in advance? You should. Plus, there's no rule that says you can't eat these loaves all year round. With so many traditional Easter loaves to choose from, it probably would take you a year to try them all anyway. Be sure to check out the list below - you have a lot of baking to do!

Camilla challenged us to make a holiday bread (Easter or Passover) from around the world or one that celebrated spring. I chose folar from Portugal. Folars vary by region. They typically have some combination of lemon, cinnamon and anise. I even came across one that was multiple layers of dough separated by cinnamon and sugar - like a huge cinnamon roll. I really wanted to make that one but I'm trying to tame my sweet tooth (read: I already had lots of cake to eat).

Folar Doves
 I also really loved the shape of this one - the round boule, the cross and the egg in the middle. The egg is traditionally deep brown (dyed with onion skins). However, since I've never dyed an egg before, I thought I'd borrow from other Easter traditions and use a brightly coloured egg. And look at that dove! (Oh, you didn't realise it was a dove? That's OK.) I won't get into how long it took me to get the hang of that simple knot. I won't even tell you that I could only do two of three. I just gave up and did a braided circle like one the Italian Easter breads.

Folar - Portuguese Easter Bread
Recipe by: Kelly   Adapted from: Tertulia de Sabores
Yield: 2 medium loaves

500 grams all purpose flour
100 grams sugar
11 grams (1 tablespoon) yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons anise seeds
1 teaspoon salt 
75 grams butter, softened 
2 eggs
134 grams milk 
1 or 2 dyed eggs
Raisins for dove eyes
1 egg plus 1 tablespoon of water for an egg wash

Combine flour, sugar, yeast, cinnamon, anise, and salt. Mix in butter, eggs and milk then knead to form a soft dough. 

Cover and let rise until doubled or refrigerate overnight. 

After dough has doubled, divide into two equal pieces. 

Two Boules: Remove 50 grams from each piece and roll the larger pieces into tight balls. Roll the 50 gram pieces into long ropes approximately 24 inches long.You want a rope that when divided in two, stretches across the dough with enough left to tuck under the dough to completely secure the egg. 
Make a small depression into the center of each ball and place a dyed egg. Cut each rope into two equal pieces and form a cross over the eggs to secure them. Secure the ends of the rope under the ball of dough.
One Boule and Three Doves: Take one half of the dough and divide into three equal pieces. Roll out to a rope of approximately 10 inches. Flatten the rope and follow this video for shaping.
Cover the boules and doves and let them rest at room temperature until they have almost doubled and the dough is puffy.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 F . When dough is ready, brush with egg wash and bake the boules for 30 minutes or until golden. the doves will be ready within 20 minutes.
I used cranberries for the eyes of my doves and the eyes were barely discernible against the bronzed dough. Definitely use raisins. 
I used this bread for one of the grilled cheese sandwiches that I posted ~ two weeks ago. 


Here's our International Easter/Passover/Spring Bread Basket

#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. You can see all our of lovely bread by following our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated after each event on the Bread Bakers home page. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient. This month Camilla at Culinary Adventures with Camilla has chosen breads from around the world that are traditional for Easter, Passover or Springtime. If you are a food blogger and would like to join us, just send an email with your blog URL to Stacy at

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  1. You are so funny. And some of us actually do get their Easter ideas well in advance. I'd give up on shaping bread like doves too. I do good just to make a round loaf.

  2. You crack me up. Your doves look well fed. They look much better than mine. At least we know they are doves, When I made mine they looked more like a puffer fish.

  3. Ha ha ha!! Such a fun post to read. I do think your dove looks like a dove. I am not sure mine would. What an interesting bread and I am sure next year we will have so many options just from bread baking group for Easter.

  4. I think your bread doves look great! I don't think I would have even bothered, so I applaud your effort. It can be tough to tie knots with sticky dough, let alone then form it into something special.

  5. I think they look exactly like doves! Fat doves, I grant you, but doves. These would be great as table decorations for Easter and then you'd get to eat them! Win-win!

  6. Hooray for fat doves and delicious bread! And one can never be too early in planning for next year! lol =)

  7. Your posts always make me laugh and your doves are adorable.

  8. Someday, next year, someone will Google Easter Bread, and you will make someone very happy!!! Love this bread!

  9. Plan for Easter? I'm still working on wrapping Christmas presents!!

  10. I agree with you... any time of the year is perfect to eat that gourgeous bread :)

  11. I can barely tie my shoes, let alone a bread, so I'm VERY impressed! And yeah, I'm with you. Why can't we eat holiday breads year round? Bring it on! Thanks for sharing this.

  12. Nice bread! I know how hard it can be to shape the bread - sometimes the dough just refuses to co-operate! Loved your post!

  13. Your dove is amazing! You did a great job with this bread.

  14. Your dove looks awesome. That is a stunning bread.

  15. What a funny post...Your bread does look like a fat dove to me....

  16. I was looking for this particular information for a long time. How delicious everything is.