- 1 Cup Warm Water
- 2 Tbsp Yeast
- 1 1/2 kg All Purpose Flour
- 200 grs Butter Room temperature
- 3 Large Eggs
- 1/2 Lt Milk Full Fat & Warm
- 200 grs Sugar
- 1 tsp Salt
- 200 grs Green Olives Seedless & cut in slices
- 200 grs Black Raisins Sucked in water
- 1 kg Sliced Ham Pork (Also can use Smoke Turkey or Beef Ham)
- 400 grs bacon Optional
- Place the warm water in a bowl and sprinkle the yeast over the water and let stand for 5 to 10 minutes in a warm place
- Place the activated yeast mixture in a bowl of a standard mixer (or a large mixing bowl if doing it by hand) add 1kg of the flour (reserve the other ½ kg), the softened butter, and two eggs, and start mixing using the dough hook attachment. Dissolve the salt and sugar into the warm milk and add it to the dough mixture gradually until all the ingredients are well combined and form a smooth dough, adding a bit of extra flour if the dough is too sticky (from the extra ½ kg reserved earlier). When well kneaded, the dough should be soft, shiny, and smooth
- Place the dough in an oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, set in a warm location, and let rise until doubled in bulk (about 45 min to an hour) Tip: I normally set my oven to the minimum for few minutes and then turn it off before I place the dough inside and I cover the dough with a clean kitchen cloth damp in hot water instead
- While the dough is rising I use that time to prepare a “mise en place” with all the fillings for later. Place the ham (and Bacon) in a plate, slices the olives, suck the raising in water (I add a bit cooking wine too for extra flavor) Tip: I love adding some red bell pepper juliennes as filling too but Not necessary
- Divide the dough in half (3 or 4 if you prefer smaller breads). On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a large rectangle shape. Place the ham (and bacon) slices over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border all around. Sprinkle the raisins and the olives around over the ham. (this is according to each person taste. I particularly love a lot of everything on it) Tip: Make sure you divide the fillings in equal parts according to the number of breads you will be making. I like to cut the bacon in small pieces and pan fried it for to extract some of the fat which I can add to the dough as well
- Roll up the dough lengthwise slightly tight (starting with the long edge), sealing the last part of the dough to the roll with some water. Place roll, seam side down, on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and tuck the ends under slightly. Repeat the same procedure with the remaining dough
- Cover the rolls with wet cloth again let it rise in a warm place for about an hour
- Pre-heat the oven at 350F/ 180C
- Bake the breads for around 30min, remove from the oven and with a pastry brush varnish them with a mixture of the extra egg and a teaspoon of sugar Tip: for more golden color breads use brown sugar or sheared Jaggery (papelon) instead of normal sugar.
- Continue to bake for another 30 minutes, until golden brown
- Remove from oven, and let it cool slightly before slicing
I must confess I’m a Christmas freak. I really love this time of the year and everything that have to do with it...
Living an expat’s life may be fun & interesting but can also be nostalgic sometimes, especially during the holidays celebrations when the memories of your home country traditions come back to your mind.
I always try to keep them alive in my heart no matter where I am. Is like if a piece of my country culture will always travel with me wherever I go; and is such a pleasure to be able to share with others a bit of our traditions...
Back home in Venezuela, among many others one of the very distinctive traditions of the Christmas season is of course the FOOD... We got such a big variety of dishes that are only made and eat during the holidays period.
All families get together between music and jokes with the only goal of preparing for the big feast. We diet all year long just to be able to eat loads in December lol I swear ...
Ham Bread (in Spanish: Pan de Jamón) is one of the jewels of the Venezuelan traditional Christmas cuisine.
Is a semi-sweet bread dough filled with ham, green olives and raisins rolled up around the fillings into a log (similar to the way cinnamon rolls are made). Once baked, the bread can be sliced and can be eaten plain or as side dish as part of the traditional Venezuelan Christmas menu.
I’m sharing a translated version of a very famous recipe back home, it is originally from one of the greatest Venezuelan’s comedian, writer and amateur cook; the one and only Claudio Nazoa. All Venezuelans will know him for sure.
So here it is, I hope you can make it and enjoy this with your love ones...
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