The rain was pouring outside. I was snuggled up in a blanket eating moist and tender bread and it all just felt right. The bread has sweet potatoes in it which means it is healthy right? In the mixed up rules of my mind it is always healthy if it has a fruit or veggie in it. I know you are thinking, “um, what about apple pie?” Well, I will tell you that apple pie is more of a side dish or snack than a dessert because it has apples of course. Desserts are the things where nothing in it has any redeemable nutritional value (though sometimes you’ll catch me telling you that at least a dessert is dark chocolate so it is healthy). I think this all stems from a childhood dillusion where I was convinced that Ovaltine was healthy. My world was shattered when my husband pointed to the ingredient list on the can. I digress. Back to the bread. I love this bread. A lot of sweet potato bread recipes are quick breads (like banana bread). This one is different. It is like a really moist roll. My kids also think it is awesome because they get to eat orange bread. And hey, I think that is pretty awesome too!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Ready In: 2 hours, 10 minutes
Yield: 1 large loaf
2 1/2 tsp instant dry yeast
1 cup cooked and mashed sweet potato
1/3 cup warm milk
1/4 cup butter, softened
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
3 to 3 1/2 cups flour
1 egg + 1 tablespoon water
1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the yeast, sweet potato, milk, butter, egg, brown sugar and salt. Mix it until it is well combined.
2. Add flour 1/2 cup at a time until a nice, soft dough forms.
3. Knead the dough for 2 minutes or so until is smooth and elastic. Place in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and let rise about 1 hour.
4. Divide the risen dough into thirds. Roll out each third into a long snake or rope (about 18 inches long). Lay the 3 ropes next to each other on a lightly greased baking sheet. One one end of the rope, pinch the 3 strands together and begin to braid. When you’ve braided the whole thing, pinch the remaining ends together.
5. Cover and let rise another 30 minutes or so. Brush the braided dough with an egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water).
6. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.