This sweet brioche bun called Judas or Jidáše in Czech is a traditional brioche buns made for Easter Thursday. Sweet buns are drizzled with hot honey and butter to give extra shine and sweetness.
Why these sweet brioche buns are so good
Let me introduce you to the easy and even less expensive way of making brioche buns. How is this brioche bun different from the classic brioche bun/bread ? Just to give you an idea: for classic brioche buns/bread, the recipe usually calls for lots of eggs and butter. The amount of eggs and butter is almost the same ratio with the flour.
So for classic brioche, you would need 4 cups (500 g) of flour, 7 eggs and 1 3/4 cup (400 g) of butter, plus other ingredients, which are similar to this recipe. This version of brioche buns calls only for 2 egg yolks and 1/3 cup (70 g) of butter for 4 cups (500 g) of flour. And I substitute all that butter and eggs for whipped cream 35% content of fat. Or if you want to keep the brioche buns with less content of fat, you can use the whole 2% milk. The dough is less sticky than the classic French dough for brioche buns/bread, and it’s much easier to work with.
These sweet brioche buns are in a shape of an “S”. And are so fluffy and very tasty. Perfect snack size. The dough is not overly sweet, so the sultana raisins adds just the right sweetness. Blanched almonds add crunchy texture and the hot honey drizzled with butter at the end of the baking brings the smell of Easter to my kitchen.
Why do I make these swet buns for the Easter ? And why it’s called “Jidáše” ?
Little history behind these sweet buns
Sweet pastries are a big hit in my kitchen any time of the year. And particularly these Easter sweet brioche buns have a long tradition in Czech cuisine. Why do we call these buns “Jidáše” or Judas buns? Because of the way, how these buns are shaped and when they are baked. The small strings/ropes of dough represent the treacherous Juda’s rope. In the old times people were saying, that Judas had hanged himself, because he couldn’t take the shame of the bad act of betraying Jesus and his people.
Czech people love traditions. And so for Easter, and any other holiday there are many traditions, often involve old biblical characters. And these traditions were also transferred to baking or cooking for the specific holiday or season.
If you would like to read more about Czech traditional Easter, which I totally recommend, because it’s so much fun, I have written a blog post about CZECH EASTER. You will find out what is “pomlázka” special whip made out of young branches of the willow tree. Why the girls gives out painted eggs to boys and many more. I am also writing about the whole week of preparation for Easter in Czech. And what each day, before Easter means, and what traditions or food should or not to be eaten.
Ingredients for Judas buns
- all-purpose flour
- unsalted butter
- egg yolks and whole egg
- 35% whipped cream
- fine sugar
- yeast (fresh or dry)
- zest from lemon
What is sweet brioche dough
What is brioche? Brioche is`something in between bread and pastry. It’s more of sweet bread with buttery and fluffy texture. It reminds me a lot of Danish pastries and raisin bread. Classic brioche dough asks for lots of eggs and this is why the dough is very sticky. This sweet brioche dough will be less sticky and will be easier to work with, because we will be using fewer eggs and to be more precise, only egg yolks. I would still recommend using stand mixer for easier kneading.
HOW TO MAKE SWEET BRIOCHE BUN FOR EASTER
- Make the leavening If you are using instant dry yeasts go directly to step 2. Take fresh yeast and add crumble them in a coffee or measuring cup. Sprinkle with a teaspoon of sugar, pour 100 ml / or 7 tbsp of lukewarm cream and mash it together with a fork. Sprinkle the mixture with 1 tsp of flour. Cover the coffee cup with plastic food foil and let the yeast rise until it doubles or for 10 minutes. If the yeast doesn’t show any activity, use new yeast.
- Measure all other ingredients in advance and add them to the standing mixer bowl in this order. Add all-purpose flour, sugar, lemon zest and salt, give it a quick stir. Then add leavening (fresh yeast mix) made from step 1 (if you are adding instant dry yeast, mix them with flour first). Add egg yolks and start mixing on low speed (I used speed no. 2).
- Mix. While the standing mixer is mixing, add slowly lukewarm whipping cream (35% fat) and wait until the dough will start to form. At this stage it will be a little crumbly. Add the room temperature butter spoon by spoon. The dough will start to be sticky. Continue kneading with the stand mixer for another 5-10 minutes on higher speed 4-5. Mix until the dough will be elastic and won’t stick any more to the mixing bowl. Now add the raisins and blanched almonds and mix only until it’s combined. About few seconds.
- Proof the dough. Remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a clean floured surface (use a handful of extra flour) and knead 2-3 times just to shape a bowl. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with kitchen towel or plastic food foil. I prefer plastic food foil, because it keeps warm humidity in the mixing bowl. Leave the bowl with the dough on a warm, non-drafty place. Let it rise for about an hour or until it has doubled in volume.
- Take out the dough from the bowl and place it onto a clean floured surface (I didn’t need to add any extra flour here, still had extra flour left from shaping the dough the first time.) Don’t roll out the dough. Simply with a knife or bread spatula cut the dough in 4 quarters, then each quarter cut into 5 equal (more or less) pieces. In total, it will give you 20 equal pieces.
- Shape Judas buns. Roll out a rope with your hands about 20-25 cm (10 inches) long and roll the “S” shape. Place the shaped dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. All the dough shaped should fit on 2 baking sheets.
- Prove the buns again. Cover the baking sheet with plastic food foil or kitchen towel and let it prove for another 20 minutes. The Judas buns should double. In the meanwhile preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F.
- Egg wash and baking. Brush the Judas buns with egg wash from 1 beaten egg with 2 tablespoons of water. Bake them for 15 minutes (middle rack), until they are golden brown. If you will be baking two baking sheets at the same time, don’t forget to turn the baking sheets in mid-time and swap the top baking sheet with the bottom one. Add also extra 1 to 2 minutes of baking.
- Drizzle with honey. Heat up the honey with butter in the microwave for 30 seconds, stir well and brush the buns immediately all over (sides too) with the honey.
- Cool the buns and enjoy. Let the buns to cool on the baking sheet for 5-10 minutes. They are best served when still warm as is or with a slice of butter or jam.
Tips to make the best sweet brioche buns
Shapes of brioche buns
Brioche buns can be made in any shapes. Round, “S” shape, palmier shape or roll shape. For Easter, we always make this “S” shape. Make sure when you roll the dough in small ropes, that you don’t add too much flour underneath. Often we tend to put a lot of flour, so the dough don’t stick. This dough is not that sticky and with this dough it’s even easier if it’s slightly sticky, because you will have a better grip to roll it on the board.
How to prove the dough for brioche buns
The suggested warm room temperature for rising the dough is around 72 F / 22C. Make sure that you cover the bowl, either with plastic wrap or clean kitchen cloth and don’t leave the dough in a draft. And don’t leave the dough in direct sunlight. When proving the dough, you want to find a warm place in your kitchen. Some ovens offer a proving drawer, which heats up and provides perfect temperature for rising the dough. This dough will be proved two times.
Making the dough in ahead
Usually classic unbaked brioche dough does not freeze well. And the reason why, is that it contains lots of butter and eggs. Even if this recipe does not contain the classic ingredients for French brioche dough, I still do not recommend freezing it. I have tried to freeze it twice, and once it worked, for the second time it didn’t. For the second time, when I froze the dough, it didn’t rise for the second time and the buns were tough.
But if you decide to give it a try and freeze the dough, make sure you do it after the first proving. Then place it in a freezer friendly container and store the container in the freezer for up to 10 days.
The safest way to make the dough in ahead is to keep the dough in the refrigerator for a day before using it. But still make sure the first proving is done.
Storing the sweet brioche buns
Usually these sweet brioche buns, once baked are gone in 2 days. So you can keep the brioche buns in room temperature (around 20 C / 68 F) always covered with plastic food wrap or in Ziploc, so they don’t dry out. Or you can store them in an airtight container. Make sure the buns are fully cooled before you will be placing them in Ziploc or in airtight container. You risk of spoiling the buns on the first day. The humidity created by hot bun speeds up the spoiling process. You can also freeze the buns in an airtight container or Ziploc bag for up to 3 months. Reheat the buns then in microwave for 10 seconds or until it’s soft.
More Easter recipes
- MINI KUGLOF ALSATIAN BRIOCHE RECIPE
- MINI EASTER TARTS WITH CHEESECAKE FILLING
- EASTER BUNNY FRENCH MADELEINES
- CREAMY RABBIT STEW WITH WHITE WINE
- MAZANEC CZECH EASTER SWEET BREAD
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Easter sweet brioche bun Jidase
For brioche dough
- 4 ⅓ cup (500 g) all purpose flour
- 5 tbsp (70 g) unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 ¼ cup (300 ml) whipped cream 35% lukewarm
- ⅓ cup (80 g) fine sugar
- 1 tsp (7 g) dry instant yeast (25 g) fresh yeast
- ½ tsp (6 g) salt
- 1 tsp (2 g) lemon zest
- 1/2 cup (80 g) raisins
- 1/2 cup (80 g) blanched almonds sliced
For egg wash
- 1 large egg
- 2 tbsp (30 g) hot water
For honey drizzle
- 2 tbsps (43 g) honey
- 1 tbsp (15 g) unsalted butter
For the dough
- If you are using instant dry yeasts go directly to step 2. Take fresh yeast and crumble them in a coffee or measuring cup. Sprinkle with a teaspoon of sugar, pour 100 ml (7 tbsp) from lukewarm cream and mash it together with a fork. Sprinkle the yeast mixture with 1 tsp of flour. Cover the coffee cup with plastic food foil and let the yeast rise on warm place, until it doubles or for 10 minutes. If the yeast doesn't show any activity, start over and use new yeast.
- Measure all other ingredients in advance and add them to the standing mixer bowl with kneading hook, in this order: All-purpose flour, sugar, lemon zest and salt, give a quick stir. Then add instant yeast (or fresh proven yeast; see step 1), egg yolks and start mixing on low speed (I used speed 2 on KitchenAid).
- While the standing mixer is mixing, add slowly lukewarm whipping cream 35% and wait until the dough will start to form. At this stage it will be a little crumbly. Add the room temperature butter spoon by spoon. The dough will be sticky. Continue kneading with the standing mixer for another 5-10 minutes on higher speed 4-5. Mix until the dough will be elastic and won't stick any more to the mixing bowl. Now add the raisins and blanched almonds and mix until it's combined. About few seconds.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a clean floured surface (use extra flour) and knead 2-3 times just to shape the ball. Place the dough back in the bowl and cover with kitchen towel or plastic food foil (I prefer plastic food foil to keep warm humidity in). Leave the bowl with the dough on a warm, non-drafty place. Let it prove for about an hour or until the dough has doubled.
- Take out the dough from the bowl and place it onto a clean floured surface. Don't need to roll out the dough. With a knife or bread spatula cut the dough in 4 quarters, then each quarter cut into 5 pieces. In total, it will give you 20 equal pieces.
- Roll out the dough in a rope with your hands about 20-25 cm (10 inches) long and shape it in "S" shape. Place the shaped dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. All this dough should fit onto 2 baking sheets.
- Cover the baking sheets with plastic food foil or kitchen towel and let it prove for another 20 minutes. The Judas buns should double in size. In the meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F. Rack in middle position.
For egg wash
- Brush the Judas buns with egg wash from 1 beaten egg & 2 tablespoons of water. Bake them for 15 minutes, on middle rack, until they are golden brown. If you will be baking two baking sheets at the same time: don't forget to turn the baking sheets in mid-time and swap the top baking sheet with the bottom one. Add also extra 1 to 2 minutes of baking.
For the honey drizzle
- Heat up the honey with butter in the microwave for 30 seconds, stir well and brush the buns immediately all over (sides too) with the honey drizzle.
- Let the buns to cool on the baking sheet for 5-10 minutes. They are best served when still warm as is, or with a slice of butter or jam.
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