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Romanian Swirl Bread-Guest Post with Roxana’s Home Baking

Welcome to another beautiful post from a very talented friend of mine. I think I need to feature my friends more often. Today's special guest is Roxana from Roxana's Home Baking!

Before I get to this beautiful bread from Roxana,  I wanted to say that I’ve been baking. I know, I know. I bake all the time. But I’ve been baking a little more than I normally do. Not just because Christmas is around the corner. It helps me deal with stress. Last week’s events has had me feeling breathless sometimes from the sadness. As a mother of a child the age of those kids murdered, I find myself wiping tears at random times throughout the day. I think of those families and what they’re enduring and my heart feels like it is going to burst in pain for them. I think many of you have been feeling the same way. I extend the deepest condolences to all those that lost their loved ones from Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Roxana was one of the first blogger friends I made when I started writing about my baking. I know I mentioned her a little in my guest post for her last Friday. When I was sick a couple years ago, Roxana surprised me with special cookies she baked and mailed to me.  On each cookie she wrote an inspiring word. They were baked with love to keep my faith and to stay strong. It was a very sweet and kind gesture. She is an incredible bread baker and I just love this swirl bread she is sharing with us today. 

Recently Roxana made this stunning and very seasonal layer cake.  I also really love her festive yogurt bundt cake. If you're a chocolate lover, you must stay a while at her site. You'll encounter fun recipes like her chocolate peppermint cake.


Hello! My name is Roxana and I'm the baker, writer and photographer behind Roxana's Home Baking. And as much as I hate it, I'm doing the dishes as well. My family, friends and neighbors are my trusty taste-testers.

I'm happy to be here, on Lora's blog. I've meet Lora when I start blogging and it was our love for baking that sealed out friendship. I love Lora and she's an amazing baker. She's so creative in the kitchen and one of the most supportive bloggers I know.
When Lora asked me to share a traditional Romanian bread on her blog I knew exactly what I want to make. "Cozonac" very similar with the Italian Panettone, is the traditional Holiday bread. I have lots of memories with my mom baking 6-8 loaves of bread the day before Christmas.

She'd sift the flour the night before and place the big wooden bowl on top of the terracotta heater. In the morning she'd start the fire in the wooden oven and while the oven got hot enough she'd start the bread dough. When all the ingredients were added the kneading part would begin. She would pull the dough and then throw it back in the mixing bowl. I remember her voice every time we'd ask "why are you beating the dough?" - "the more I slap it, the fluffier the bread will be". Oh, and it was. We could not wait for her to take the bread loaves out of the oven. One loaf would be gone before you had time to count to 5. Tongue burns? Oh yeah, but not even those could stop us from tearing another bread piece and eat it like there was no tomorrow.

Even tho I haven't spent Christmas back in Romania in years I still crave the Romanian bread when the holidays are getting closer.

The recipe below is translated and adapted form a recipe passed from generations to generations. I hope in 20-30 years from now my daughter will bake some for her family as well

Romanian Swirl Bread

6 oz (168 grams) bread flour (I used King Arthur Flour)
1 cup (240 ml) boiling milk (I used 1%)
3 tsp dry yeast
6 egg yolks
1 tsp salt
1 cup (200 grams) sugar
3/4 cup (180 ml) lukewarm milk
1/2 cup (113 grams) melted and cooled butter
5 cups (600 grams) bread flour
1/4 cup (60 ml) grapeseed oil
1 1/2 cups dried fruit/chocolate chips/Turkish delight/nuts - whatever you want to fill the bread with

Directions: In a mixing bowl add the 6 oz bread flour. Pour the boiling milk over it and whisk until well combined. Leave at room temperature for about 5-10 minutes until lukewarm.

Add the dry yeast and mix until combined. Cover and leave again at room temperature until it's almost doubled in volume (should take about 15-20 minutes)

In the meantime mix the egg yolks with the salt and sugar. Slowly pour the lukewarm milk and melted butter (make sure the milk not the butter are hot or the egg yolks might scramble)

When the flour-yeast mixture has almost doubled, with the dough hook attachment on start mixing slowly adding the wet ingredients mixture.

Now slowly, 1/2 cup at a time, add the remaining 5 cups of flour. When all the flour is incorporated increase the mixer speed and slowly pour the 1/4 cup grapeseed oil.

The dough might seem like a sticky mess at this point but keep mixing until the dough wraps around the hook and it slaps the sides of the mixing bowl.

The dough will still be slightly sticky and will not clean itself completely from the sides of the bowl.

With oiled hands, remove the dough from the mixing bowl and place it into a clean greased bowl. Cover with plastic foil and leave at room temperature until doubled in volume (about 1 hour or so). Punch down the dough and leave to rise again for another 35-40 minutes.

Divide the dough in 3 and onto a lightly floured surface roll each ball into a 15X9 inch rectangle. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the filling and roll it on the short side. Place the swirled bread into a greased 9X5 inch loaf pan.

Do the same with the remaining 2 dough balls.

Cover the pans and leave to rise again for another 35-40 minutes.

In the meantime heat the oven to 375F.

Place the loaf pans in the oven and bake for 45 minutes or until the smell of fresh baked bread takes over your kitchen. As soon as you remove the bread from the oven brush it with melted butter (optional)

Leave to cool for 25-20 minutes in the pan before removing.


Thank you, Roxana, for sharing this beautiful Romanian Swirl Bread.

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  1. What a beautiful post, and the bread is gorgeous! Thanks Lora and Roxana :)

  2. Hi Lora,
    Thanks for allowing me to share my bread on your beautiful site. I'm already planning on making a couple more of these bread this coming weekend but today i have Panettone on my list :)

  3. This is a beautiful bread. I made panettone last week for the first time and loved it. I'd be interested in trying this recipe, too. My grandparents were from Romania and traditional baking has always been a big thing for the women of the clan!

  4. This is quite a lovely and relatively simple sweet bread. I imagine, with the richness of the ingredients, that it must taste rather like brioche. Nice job, Roxana!

  5. Beautiful post, beautiful recipe... You gals are my favorite!! Love you both! And this bread!!

  6. baking and cooking soothes me as well, Lora... sending you all warm hugs.

    Roxana's breads, like yours, always look so good - I can almost taste this one!

  7. You and Roxana are a great match! You both bake beautiful bread!

  8. Great guest post, Beautiful bread recipe.

  9. What a gorgeous bread! I love Roxanna's goodies and yours are equally scrumptious.

  10. Beautiful bread!-Roxana your bread is baked perfectly-just gorgeous for Christmas;-)Sometimes baking really keeps us going-that's just one of the things I love about it;-)

  11. What a wonderful recipe to pass day through your family! I know I'd love this bread, nice to see you here :).

  12. Roxana is one talented bread baker - this looks wonderful!

  13. I'd love a piece of this yummy looking bread toasted with butter - but I'm sure one piece would never do!

  14. Roxana makes baking look easy! I have yet to really conquer my fear of baking yeasted goods...Soon, I promise. In the meantime, I'll enjoy this Romanian swirl bread on my screen :)

  15. It look amazingly yaammmiii!!

  16. Roxanna is an amazing baker! I love all of the breads you make. This one is making my mouth water!!

  17. This bread is absolutely gorgeous, Roxana! Great guest post!

  18. Wowee Roxy did such a fine job with this Romanian bread. The crumb, everything about it looks so perfect! Great guest post, Lora!

  19. Hi ladies, wow that is one delightful looking bread :)
    Happy holidays to you both!