English Saffron Bread

This English Saffron Bread recipe has a sweet taste with a moist center. Great for the Holidays!

sliced english saffron bread

I love making Bread. Probably my favorite things to make. I’ve been making homemade bread for a couple of decades now but this is the first time I’ve made such a challenging artisan bread as this English Saffron Bread recipe.

braided bread dough

I’ve had this recipe for a few years now and pretty much avoided it because of the high cost of Saffron. I finally got some Saffron as a gift so I had no more excuses not to make this bread.

saffron

Is Saffron so expensive because it’s so rare? I heard it originated in Iran but why is it so expensive? Maybe because of how it’s manufactured? Check out this informative article.

The other part of this recipe that might be challenging for some of you to make is the preparation of the dough and braiding it.

saffron bread loaf fresh out of the oven

I asked for a little help from my wife for the braiding part as she has a lot more experience braiding hair than I do!

english saffron bread

If you’ve never made homemade bread, I would strongly suggest you cut your teeth on an easier recipe like my Easy Bread Dough recipe or even my Homemade Dinner Rolls recipe.

You will need the following ingredients to make this English Saffron Bread recipe (see recipe card for quantities): Milk, Butter, White Sugar, Saffron, Active Yeast, Eggs, Salt, Ground Nutmeg, Ground Cinnamon, Lemon Zest and Bread Flour.

  1. In a small saucepan, heat the milk until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Add the butter, sugar and stir until the butter is melted. Let cool until lukewarm.
  2. In a small bowl, soak the saffron in 1/2 Cup hot water, let cool until lukewarm, drain and reserve the liquid.
  3. In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, combine the milk mixture with the reserved saffron water and beaten eggs. Add the yeast and stir to dissolve.
  4. Add the salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, lemon zest and 4 cups of flour, mix well. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition.
  5. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.
  6. Lightly oil a large mixing bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
  7. Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into three equal pieces. Form into 14-inch long ropes.
  8. Braid the ropes together and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in size, about 40 minutes.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  10. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.
  11. Remove to a wire rack and cool.
english saffron bread

Printable Recipe Card

english saffron bread

English Saffron Bread

This English Saffron Bread recipe has a sweet taste with a moist center. Great for the Holidays!
4.80 from 10 votes
Prep Time2 hours
Cook Time1 hour
Total Time3 hours
Course Bread Recipes
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 459 kcal

Equipment

  • Saucepan
  • Stand Mixer (w/ dough hook)
  • Baking Sheet
  • Wire Rack

Ingredients
 

  • 1 ½ Cups Milk
  • 1 Cup Unsalted Butter
  • 1 Cup White Sugar
  • 2 Tsp Saffron
  • ¼ oz Active Dry Yeast
  • 2 Eggs, beaten
  • 2 Tsp Salt
  • ½ Tsp Ground Nutmeg
  • 1 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp Lemon Zest
  • 6 Cups Bread Flour

Instructions
 

  • In a small saucepan, heat the milk until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Add the butter, sugar and stir until the butter is melted. Let cool until lukewarm.
  • In a small bowl, soak the saffron in 1/2 Cup hot water, let cool until lukewarm, drain and reserve the liquid.
  • In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, combine the milk mixture with the reserved saffron water and beaten eggs. Add the yeast and stir to dissolve.
  • Add the salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, lemon zest and 4 cups of the flour, mix well. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition.
  • When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.
  • Lightly oil a large mixing bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
  • Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into three equal pieces. Form into 14 inch long ropes.
  • Braid the ropes together and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in size, about 40 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until golden brown and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.
  • Remove to a wire rack and cool.

Nutrition

Calories: 459kcalCarbohydrates: 64gProtein: 9gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 548mgPotassium: 123mgFiber: 1gSugar: 18gVitamin A: 560IUVitamin C: 1.4mgCalcium: 58mgIron: 0.7mg

Nutritional information provided for this recipe is based on 1 serving. This information is an estimate and may vary based on several factors. If nutritional information is important to you and your diet, please verify this recipe with a Registered Dietitian.

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4.80 from 10 votes (9 ratings without comment)

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One Comment

  1. Marie says:

    This saffron bread is the best I have ever made.