My second week into the BBA challenge and I'm already late. In the span of one week, I have had out of town guests, a 100th birthday celebration (no, not mine), a dinner party for 14, and a visit from my youngest step-daughter (that was the best part of the week). I considered skipping this bread and coming back to it later but my OLDER sister said I had to bake them in order. (She always was a pest) Just kidding Terri. Truth be known, I was the pesky little sister that got into her make-up, her clothes and followed her everywhere. Somehow, she has forgiven me. (I'm guessing it's because senility is setting in ;) I love that she and I are doing this challenge together. (she is mustangterri in San Diego)
So what did Rick think of Christopsomos? He ate 4 huge pieces and ruined his dinner! He said he would do it all over again given the choice. lol (now who's going for the bonus points?) He loved the orange zest but said the bread needed more raisins. (what did you expect from a raisin lover?)
Anyway, onto the bread! We had the choice of three different variations of Artos: Greek Celebration Bread. I found the picture of Christopsomos very intriguing, so I choose it. However, after shaping mine, I noticed the author didn't use the dried fruits and nuts in his. He's such a cheater!
Typically, I wouldn't make a bread with raisins. It's just not my thing. But I'm married to a man who loves raisins in everything, so being the awesome wife I am, I made the sacrificed. ;-)
This bread smelled amazing from the moment the spices and zest were added to the flour.
I selected golden raisins, dried cherries and orange zest from a list of options for the bread and I used a barm instead of a poolish. I didn't have allspice or cloves on hand, so I used Anise, (Rick's favorite spice) I'm really going for the extra bonus points here. He'll probably think I put a dent in the car when he taste this. I glazed the bread with a simple syrup enhanced with honey and orange extract. I omitted the optional sesame seeds because I ...um... forgot.
I timed the bread to be ready to slice at the same time I knew Rick would be driving by our house on his way back to the office from a meeting. I asked him to swing by and pick up the bread for an afternoon snack for everyone. (it was enough bread to feed a small army)