It’s pretty, it’s delicious, and it makes everyone smile, yep, we’re talking about a loaf of our homemade braided bread. We’ll give you a step-by-step explanation all about how to make a beautiful braided loaf. Just use the recipe we spotlighted yesterday, you know the one, “One Bread Recipe for Endless Possibilities“, and let’s start braiding.
What you’ll need
Preheat your oven to 355 degrees fahrenheit
The recipe is enough to make two braided bread loaves, so we recommend using a Gygi bowl scraper to easily cut the dough in half (or you can just half the recipe if you only want to make one loaf).
Next, separate your halved pile of dough into 6 pieces and roll them out into long dough segments.
Line up all six dough segments on a well-floured surface. Make sure the dough segments do not touch one another. Combine all the 6 ends of the segments, on one side of the line-up. Toss a little flour on top of the dough segments to ensure they don’t stick to each other.
Now, you’ll start braiding. To do this, you’ll always want to pull from the same side. Pick either the right or left side. We used the right side in the pictures below. Pick up the end segment, on the far right, and pull it over two segments, under the third, and over the rest of the segments until it reaches the other end. You’ll always pull from one side and end on one side.
In short, you’ll want to always go over two, under one, over two.
Continue this process of bringing the end piece over two, under one, and over two (until it reaches the other side) until you reach the bottom of your loaf. If you start on the right side all the segments on the right will eventually end up on the left.
Once you reach the bottom of the loaf, tuck all the ends under the loaf and combine them using the same technique you used at the top to make a uniformed look on both ends.
Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and let the bread rise for about 15-20 minutes. Bake for 30-minutes. Melt down 1/4 cup of butter and brush on top of the loaf after baking for 30-minutes. Bake for 5 more minutes, or until the bread has become browned on all sides.
Gygi Pro Tip: If you want your bread to have a glistening sheen, whip up egg whites and brush the egg whites onto of the loaf. This creates that store-bought shine.