- 170 g unsalted butter
- 500 ml whole milk
- 1 small pinch of saffron threads
- 180 g caster sugar
- 10 g fast-action dried yeast
- 800 g strong flour , plus extra for dusting
- 115 g icing sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
- 150 g dried pear , or apple
- 120 ml Cognac , or Calvados
- 150 g unsalted butter , (at room temperature)
- 80 g plain flour
- 100 g hazelnuts
- 5 tablespoons caster sugar
- 1 small lemon
- First, start your filling. Finely chop the dried pear or apple and mix in a bowl with your chosen liqueur or water. Set aside.
- For the dough, melt the butter with the milk in a pan over a low heat. Stir in the saffron, set aside and allow to cool.
- Mix the sugar, ½ a teaspoon of sea salt, yeast and flour in the bowl of a free-standing mixer. Gradually add the milk mixture and mix well.
- Using the dough hook attachment on the mixer, knead for 15 minutes, or until silky and coming away from the sides of the bowl. Place in a greased bowl, cover and leave to rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
- Returning to the filling, drain the dried fruit and add to a bowl. Finely grate in the lemon zest, finely chop the hazelnuts and add along with rest of the filling ingredients, rubbing together with your fingers. Cover and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4.
- Roll out the dough on a floured surface into a 28cm x 70cm rectangle. Spread the filling over the dough, leaving a 3cm border all the way around.
- Roll the dough up from one of the longer ends, pressing the edge firmly to seal. Cut the roll in half lengthways, turn the pieces cut-side-up, then loosely twist around each other.
- Bring the ends together into a ring, tuck one under the other, and press to seal. Transfer the wreath to a baking tray, cover with a clean tea towel and set aside for 30 minutes, or until increased by half its size.
- Bake in the middle of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until golden and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped. Allow to cool on a rack.
- Meanwhile, whisk the icing sugar, cardamom 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of water in a bowl. Drizzle over the wreath, and serve.