Friday, 30 March 2018


Bread is a staple in practically every country on earth and over time recipes have evolved to make this everyday food more special for various festivals, seasons and holidays. And Easter breads are no exception. There are so many variations to choose from that it is not easy to decide which bread to bake. But for me it will probably always be the Easter bread nest!

Easter Bread Nests
Each nest contains a coloured egg and is large enough for one person's breakfast. It is not a typical plain bread but enriched with eggs, milk and butter and a mix of dried fruit. Fresh from the oven it will make your mouth water. Best eaten with a little butter and the accompanying egg. You could have a dollop of honey or orange marmalade with it. Whatever your choice, this Easter bread is delicious!

You can bake the bread the day before you wish to serve it and just warm it briefly in a moderate oven or the dough can be prepared the evening before including the shaping and in the morning you only have to brush with melted butter and bake! Now let's go to the recipe.


500 g flour
1 tsp salt
50 g sugar
100 g butter
120 ml milk
1 1/2 Tbsp dried (active) yeast
3 eggs, lightly beaten
100 g dried tropical fruit (if not available, raisins or sultanas can be substituted but not mixed fruit)
50 g butter, melted

You will need one large or two small baking sheets, greased and dusted with flour. To prepare the dough you'll want a large bowl for the dry ingredients, a jug for the milk, a small bowl for the beaten eggs and a small saucepan to melt the butter.


Sift flour and salt into bowl. Melt the 100 g butter in a saucepan over a gentle heat. When melted take butter off the heat and allow to cool a little. Then add it to the milk, add the sugar and yeast and mix thoroughly. Make a well in the flour, pour in the milk mixture and sprinkle the top thickly with the surrounding flour. Cover the bowl and let it sit in a warm place for about half an hour to develop the yeast. When the flour on top starts breaking up we go on to the next step.

The flour developing cracks
With your hands or a wooden spoon mix the flour layer with the liquid underneath, drawing in a little extra flour from the sides as well as adding the eggs gradually. When the eggs are well incorporated work in the remaining flour together with the dried tropical fruit (which contains mango, pawpaw, coconut, pineapple and melon). Knead gently to form a soft and smooth dough. Cover and allow to rise for about 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in size. Then knock down the dough and divide it into 4 equal pieces, each of which you cut in half again. Take one piece and roll it by hand into a long rope  on a lightly floured work top to a length of 30 to 40 cm. Roll a second piece to match. Now pinch two ends together and twist the two ropes around each other , form into a circle and pinch ends together to close. Place on prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough. Place one coloured egg into the centre of each nest, cover and allow to rise again until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Preheat oven to 190℃ / 375℉. When your Easter nests have risen melt the remaining 50 g of butter and brush all over, except the eggs. Bake for 25 - 30 minutes in centre of oven until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.

If you are doing this in the evening for next morning's baking, keep the shaped bread nests covered on smaller baking trays in the fridge. In the morning allow the bread to return to room temperature, then brush with the melted butter and bake as above.

You can use the eggs plain or dyed. If plain place them in the nests uncooked. But if you want them coloured you can follow this method: Boil enough water to cover 4 eggs, drop in the eggs and boil for only 2 minutes. Remove from the boiling water with a spoon and drop each egg into a glass prepared with the dye. For this I half filled 4 glasses with water and 1 Tbsp vinegar and added 1/2 a tsp of liquid food colouring to each. Yellow, cochineal, sky blue and equal amounts of yellow and blue to give me green.

Clockwise from top left: yellow, blue, red (cochineal), green

Allow eggs to stay for 20 - 30 minutes to reach the depth of colour you want. Rinse, dry and add to the nests. Boiling them for only 2 minutes will prevent them from becoming too hard while baking!

My finished Easter Bread Nests!

If you enjoyed this recipe, please drop me a comment!


  1. It looks great! Do you have recipes or tried any with gluten free flour?

    1. Thank you and also thanks for asking. Personally I have not tried anything gluten free but I can't see why it shouldn't work, except that it might be a bit crumbly.


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