On December 16th I promised to post the vánočka recipe. Unfortunately, we left Texas before Mr. Big Food’s Mom and Mr. Big Food had the chance to make a vánočka together. Our layover, between Texas and North Carolina, wasn’t long enough for baking a vánočka before Christmas. Now that our travels are over for a long while, there’s finally time for some baking.
|Ready to rise again for 45 minutes|
Vánočka is Czech Christmas bread.
Vánočka is a bread, baked in Czech Republic and Slovakia (in Slovak called vianočka) traditionally at Christmastime. It is rich in eggs and butter, making it similar to brioche. Lemon rind and nutmeg add color and flavor; the dough can also contain raisins and almonds, and is braided like challah. A vánočka may be built from three progressively smaller braids, stacked on top of each other; this is sometimes interpreted as a rough sculpture of the baby Jesus wrapped in cloth and lying in a manger.
It has a reputation for being difficult to prepare, so in many households, superstitions and special customs are attached to the baking process. When making vánočka, it is said that you must think of everyone dear to you. Another custom is to avoid touching silver or metal to the vánočka. Finally, the person who is making the vánočka should jump up and down while the dough rises.
The bread is named after Vánoce meaning Christmas in Czech (Vianoce in Slovak).
Our (I did the kneading!) vánočka is rising right now and no one is jumping up and down except Rocky. I mentioned what the entry said about vánočka‘s reputation to Mr. Big Food, and he said, “No it isn’t!” with the same inflection he’d have used if I had said that the Earth was flat.
|We’ll keep one half and give the other to the very nice older lady who fed and cared for our old old dog while we traveled to newNorth Carolina.|