Tsoureki is a Greek brioche Easter bread, which has a three-strand braid, representing the Holy Trinity. It’s traditionally made on Holy Thursday and eaten after midnight Church service when people go back home and break their fast.

Here is our simple recipe for four large, fluffy, sweet, and ever-so-tasty Tsourekia!  

Ingredients 

– 1 & 1/2 kilos all-purpose white flour 

– 30gm x dried yeast

– 600ml x full cream milk, lukewarm

– 500gm x sugar

– pinch of salt

– 60gm x vanilla sugar 

– 6 x tears of mastic, freshly ground

– 6gm x mahlepi (optional) 

– 7 x medium-sized eggs, lightly beaten 

– 375 gm x unsalted butter, melted

– 1 x egg for glazing 

– 2 x tbsp water for glazing

– sesame seeds for sprinkling

Method 

-Dissolve yeast in 3/4 cups of milk and a teaspoon of sugar.  Set aside. 

– Lightly heat milk in a saucepan and add to the remaining sugar. Stir until sugar has dissolved.

– Sift flour into a large bowl and add salt. Mix and create well in the centre of the bowl. 

-Add yeast, lightly beaten eggs, dissolved sugar, vanilla sugar, ground mastic, mahlepi (optional), melted butter and mix well until all ingredients are well combined. 

– Cover the dough with a clean kitchen towel and leave it in a warm place to proof and double in volume. This will take 3-4 hours.

– When ready, place dough onto a clean working surface and knead with your hands for 1-2 minutes. Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Take each piece of dough and divide it into 3 equal pieces.

-Take the first set of dough and one-by-one, shape each of the 3 pieces into a long rope about 50 cm long, 5 cm wide. Place the 3 ropes on the baking paper, connect the 3 ropes on one end and braid them. Tuck the ends underneath. Take the second set of dough and repeat. 

-Transfer the braided tsourekia onto baking trays and cover them with clean kitchen towels. Leave them at a warm place for 1 hour to rise more.

-In the meantime, preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

– In a small bowl, add the egg yolk and water and mix well with a fork.

-Once the braids have proofed, using a brush, apply the glaze over the braids and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

-Place Tsourekia in preheated oven and bake for around 30-35 minutes or until golden- brown and cooked through. 

-Allow to slightly cool. Then move the tsourekia on wire racks to cool completely.

Recipe and Images by IN+SIGHTS GREECE © (Copyright) 

Penny Zalalas

Executive Editor

At the age of 18, when starting her university degree in Media & Culture, Penny was offered her first role in the industry and began her career at Rupert Murdoch’s News Limited. Since then she has worked as a journalist & editor in both print & online publications, bringing with her 20 + years of experience in magazines. Her utter love for Greece, plus a constant urge to create, innovate & inspire is what led her to launch IN+SIGHTS GREECE.

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