Recipe for Easter Bread Nests, a fun way to serve bread and dyed eggs for the spring season. Braided whole wheat flour dough, topped with sesame seeds, then shaped around a hard boiled egg. This bread has a lovely texture, slight sweetness, and makes a great Easter centerpiece. Best eaten fresh and within a couple of days at room temperature or store in the fridge for up to two weeks.
Do you make a traditional Easter meal with your family every year? My spread usually consists of spiral ham, deviled eggs, mashed potatoes, green beens, and of course some type of amazing bread. I can’t get enough deviled eggs, so I dyed a couple dozen to save a few for my bread. Pane di Pasqua is an Italian bread perfect for displaying your dyed eggs. Normally this is a very large loaf with several eggs amongst the braids. But, in order to share them with friends, I decided to make smaller bird nest loaves.
*I had forgotten how much fun it is to dye eggs. Can this be something we do all year long?!*
What are Easter Bread Nests?
Easter Bread Nests are a twist on the Italian and Greek versions of Easter Bread. This recipe is a whole wheat version including naturally dyed eggs. The yellow eggs are colored by setting boiled eggs in 2 cups warm water, 3 tablespoons of vinegar, and 3 tablespoons of turmeric for a couple of hours. Once eggs are removed from dye mixture, gently pat dry and place in the center of baked nest prior to serving.
Easter Bread | Pane di Pasqua
Easter Bread is a braided loaf with colored eggs nestled between the braids. A fun traditional bake amongst the Italians and Greeks . Pane de Pasqua coincides with Easter, the onset of spring, and the rebirth of nature. Colorful eggs are used to represent the hues of springtime flowers.
Easter Bread Nests |Pane di Pasqua
Turmeric Dyed Eggs
- 4-8 white eggs
- 2 cups water
- 3 Tbsp vinegar
- 3 Tbsp Turmeric powder
- 1 1/2 cups 360 grams warm almond milk
- 4 1/2 tsp 14 grams active dry yeast
- 1 tbsp raw organic sugar
- 4 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 cups bread flour
- 4 eggs lightly beaten
- 2/3 cup 133 grams raw organic sugar
- 2 tsp 6 grams kosher salt
- 1 cup 227 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 egg stirred with fork for egg wash
- 1/4 cup sesame seeds
- 4 dyed eggs
Add 3 cups boiling water, 3 Tbsp vinegar, and 3 Tbsp Turmeric powder to a medium bowl. Gently place eggs into the dye with a spoon. Let sit for two hours or until they have a nice yellow coloring. Remove from dye and gently pat dry with towel. Refrigerate until time to bake with bread.
Combine warm almond milk, 1 tbsp sugar and yeast in bowl of stand mixer. Let sit 5-10 min until foamy.
Stir together sifted wheat and bread flours into a medium bowl and set aside.
In a separate bowl whisk together butter, salt and remaining 2/3 cup of sugar.
Add sugar and butter to yeast mixture and blend on medium speed with paddle attachment.
Incorporate eggs until well combined.
Switch to dough hook attachment.
Slowly spoon flours into mixer bowl at medium speed.
Once a dough consistency is formed remove from stand mixer and place in a lightly oiled container, cover with plastic wrap and set in warm place for an hour, or until dough has doubled in size. (dough should not be sticky, if so add bread flour as needed)
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat oven to 350 F.
Place dough on a lightly oiled surface.
Punch down excess air and divide dough into 12 pieces.
Take 3 pieces and roll into 12 inch strands.
Place the strands vertically in front of you and squeeze the tips together.
Braid the pieces until you reach the end. Curve the braid into a circle and pinch the two ends together, creating a wreath shape.
Transfer bird nest to baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.
Place a dyed egg in the center of each nest.
Cover baking trays with the four nests and let puff for an additional 30 min.
Brush egg wash across dough and into braided creases, avoiding eggs.
Sprinkle sesame seeds onto dough.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Thermometer inserted into thickest part of loaf should read 190 F.
Let cool 10-15 minutes before serving. Create different colored eggs with natural dye. Mashed blueberries for blue or beet juice for a soft pink.