Tsoureki: A Traditional Greek Easter Bread Recipe

Tsoureki is a traditional sweet bread that Greeks like to eat throughout the year, especially on Easter and Christmas. This dessert is a favorite one not only in Greece but also in other countries with vivid Greek communities.

Greek homemade tsoureki requires flour, milk, mahlep, mastic, eggs, butter, sugar, and almonds. When making a tsoureki, you usually brush the dough with egg wash before baking and sometimes flavored with mahlep, mastic resin, or orange zest. Mahleb or mahalepi is an aromatic spice while mastic is an aromatic resin that traditionally comes from the island Chios.

This tsoureki recipe, which serves around 10 persons, takes around one hour to prepare and 40 minutes to bake. But, it has more than four hours waiting period before baking. One large slice of tsoureki has around 200 calories.

tsoureki

Tsoureki – Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 k of flour
  • 400 g of sugar
  • 320 g of butter
  • 100 g of yeast
  • 230 g of milk, lukewarm
  • 3 eggs, beaten.
  • 1 teaspoon of mastic
  • 1 teaspoon of mahlep
  • Almonds blanched, browned, and coarsely crushed.

Tsoureki – How to Make

  1. Start this authentic homemade tsoureki recipe by dissolving the yeast in a little warm milk and adding around 3 to 4 tablespoons of flour.
  2. Allow the yeast to rise in a warm place.
  3. In the meantime, take a deep bowl and sift the rest of the flow.
  4. Make a hole in the center of the flour and when the yeast has risen, put the yeast mixture in it.
  5. Take a pan and add the remaining milk, eggs, sugar, half of the mastic, and 250 g of the butter. Bring to boil over medium temperature allowing the ingredients to combine well.
  6. Pour half this mixture in the bowl with the flour and yeast and knead well with your hands.
  7. Melt the rest of the butter.
  8. Now pour the remaining eggs mixture to the flour and yeast mixture.
  9. Continue kneading, greasing your hands with the melted butter.
  10. Make sure the dough has of a good consistency, neither stiff nor runny.
  11. You may need to add more flour depending on the consistency.
  12. Place the dough, covered with a clean cloth, in a warm place to rise.
  13. The dough is ready when risen enough. This should take around 2 hours.
  14. Take a baking pan and cover it with some non-stick paper.
  15. Separate the dough into 3 thick strips and plait them. Place them on the baking pan and allow it to rest for another hour.
  16. Preheat oven to 180 °C.
  17. Brush it with beaten egg and sprinkle with the almonds and the rest of the mastic
  18. You may decorate the tsoureki with a red hard-boiled egg at one end.
  19. Bake for around 40 minutes.
  20. Allow to cool down before serving. 
I hope you enjoy this tsoureki recipe. Happy Easter!