Sweet, rich dark chocolate and tangy orange marmalade are perfectly entwined in-between the layers of these beautiful Jaffa Cake Babka Knots
The second edition of my Biscuit Babka Series and it’s my other favourite, the Jaffa Cake. Controversially you’ll probably tell me this isn’t a biscuit it’s a cake but regardless it’s biscuit sized so we’ll leave it there.
I have a very particular way around eating Jaffa cakes. Nibble the edges, eat the sponge and then leave the chocolate and orange jelly on my tongue to melt away. It’s a process, but it makes it so much more enjoyable, much like these beautiful Jaffa Cake Babka Knots.Jump to Recipe
HOW TO SHAPE THESE JAFFA CAKE BABKA KNOTS
The method for shaping Babka Knots is very much the same as shaping a babka. The only difference is your making lots of mini rolls as opposed to one large roll.
Essentially you need to divide your proved and knocked back dough into 8 equal pieces. One piece at a time roll the dough out into a small rectangle (approx 4×7 inches). Spread your filling onto the rectangle and then roll it tightly horizontally into a log. Continue with all remaining prices and then leave them to chill before cutting them down the centre and twisting as you would an ordinary babka. Read my tips on Shaping a Babka Dough here or follow the steps from The Cozy Kitchen and her blog post here.
WHY DO THIS JAFFA CAKE BABKA KNOT DOUGH NEED TO BE CHILLED?
In my Jammy Dodger Babka post I shared some advice on baking babka and within that answered the question on why we chill dough.
There are several reasons why we chill dough and as specified in the Jammy Dodger Babka’s case I suggested chilling the dough overnight during the first prove to enhance the flavour. The same process can be followed for this Jaffa cake Babka but there is another reason.
In this recipe’s case the dough is chilled instead once it’s been filled and rolled Why? Well because the babka filling is extremely wet so cutting it and twisting it into a babka shape at this point would just be super messy.
Instead the dough is proved as normal, then filled with the chocolate/marmalade mixture and rolled up into pieces of baking paper. These rolls can then be chilled in the fridge overnight, where the same enhanced flavour process takes place, plus the filling solidifies making it so much easier to cut and twist the following day. It can then go through the second prove again as normal.
Of course if time is of the essence then you could skip the overnight and chill it in the freezer for 15-20 minutes. You’d just lose that enhanced flavour, but the gain is eating Jaffa Babka sooner.
DO I HAVE TO USE MARMALADE?
Quick answer to this is no. In fact if you wanted to you could make your own orange jelly and use that instead. I haven’t tested this though so I’m not sure entirely how much flavour it would bring through.
I find the marmalade gives this a much more grown up edge and you can always enhance the flavour further by adding orange extract.
If Marmalade is completely out of the question then you can skip it entirely and essentially make a chocolate babka on its own. Or, add in some orange zest and juice to the chocolate mix and you’ve got a Chocolate Orange Babka.
OTHER BABKA QUESTIONS ANSWERED
I would love it if you tagged me @mykitchendrawer on Instagram if you make this Jaffa Cake Babka Knots. It’s the biggest honour to see my recipes come to life in your kitchen and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to drop me a message. Happy baking!
Jaffa Cake Babka Knots
- 500 g strong white bread flour I use Cotswold Canadian Great White
- 2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
- 240 ml hot water not scalding hot
- 1 tbsp salt
- 50 g caster sugar
- 120 ml canola oil or other neutral oil
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
For the filling
- 150 g dark chocolate
- 130 g butter
- 50 g icing sugar
- 30 g coco powder
- 100 g orange marmalade
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
For the dough
- Begin by whisking 130 g of the strong white bread flour with the yeast and stir in the hot water until combined. Cover with cling film or a tea towel and leave for approx 45 minutes, until puffy and bubbly.
- Once it's ready, add the salt, sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla, then stir until well mixed.
- Add the remaining flour and fold through until a sticky dough forms. Turn dough onto lightly floured work surface and knead for just a few minutes, until it becomes smooth, then transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover it to prove for one to two hours (until it’s doubled in size). TIP: You can choose to prove overnight here. This process slows down the rise and enhances the flavour
For the filling
- When the dough is nearly ready begin making the filling by melting the chocoalte and butter together. Leave to cool then add the icing sugar and coco powder and stir until smooth.
- When the dough has fully proved tip it out of the bowl and punch it down then divide it into 8 equal parts. Using a rolling pin, one by one roll each piece into a rectangle about 4-inches in width by 7-inches in length.
- Spread the cooled chocolate filling and a tsp of marmalade over the the top leaving ½-inch border all the way around, then roll up the dough horizontally into a log. Wrap each piece in parchment paper and transfer it to a baking sheet.
- Repeat with remaining dough and filling then transfer loaves to freezer to chill for 15 minutes.
- While it chills, grease a muffin tin with butter
- Place one chilled mini log onto a large cutting board and remove baking paper. Cut the log in half lengthwise and lay them next to each other cut sides up so you can see all the chocolate lines on the inside.
- Lift one half over the other and twist each around the other, then transfer the twist as best as you can into the prepared muffin tin
- Repeat with all remaining pieces and cover tin with a tea towel to prove again for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 190C, then place the buns in the oven an bake on the middle rack of your oven for 25 – 30 minutes.
- Remove the Babka Knots from oven and brush with maple syrup generously over both the buns whilst it's still warm. Leave for 15 minutes then turn them out onto a wire rack.
- Serve while they're still warm.