The King said,
And then he said,
“Oh dear me!”
“The King sobbed, “Oh, dear me!”
And went back to bed.
“Could call me
A fussy man;
I only want
A little bit
Of butter for
(from “The King’s Breakfast” by A. A. Milne)
The King of A. A. Milne’s verses liked his bread plainly buttered and heartily resented the suggestion that he accept marmalade as a substitute. A slice of good bread is not partisan. It will oblige a taste for butter, something sweet, or both together.
Chocolate Bread is not a sweet, cake-like loaf. it is–what its name says it is–a bread. And it will satisfy the purist who likes only ‘a little bit of butter to his bread’ as well as anyone who regards a slice of bread as the foundation for multiple layers of flavour. For the latter group Vanilla Hazelnut Spread will mildly sweeten this second loaf without changing its essential character–which is that of a fine, simple rendition of the staff of life.
Chocolate Bread (for 2 loaves)
Note: To print this recipe, or any other diplomatickitchen recipe, go to the bottom of the page, at the end of the post, and click on the icon: Print & PDF. You will have the option of printing in smaller text size and without photos.
- 3 and 1/2 cups of Unbleached White Flour
- 5 teaspoons of Baking Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of Salt
- 1/4 cup of Butter, plus some more to grease the loaf pans
- 3 Ounces of Dark Chocolate
- 1/2 cup of Granulated White Sugar
- 1 Egg, beaten
- 2 cups of Milk
- Optional to accompany the bread: Vanilla Hazelnut Spread. The recipe follows the one for the Chocolate Bread.
- A Second Option: Cocoa Powder to sprinkle on the Vanilla Hazelnut Spread or on plain buttered slices of the bread.
- 2 Loaf Pans: The photographed pans are of two diffferent sizes. One is longer and narrower with a base of 9-inches (23.5 cm) by 3 and 1/4-inches (9 cm), and is 3 inches (8 cm) deep. The second pan is a standard American one with a base measuring 8 and 1/4-inches (21 cm) by 4-inches (10.5 cm) and is 2 and 1/2-inches deep (about 6 cm). Baking times are the same for pans of either size.
- Parchment Paper to line the bottoms of the pans
- a Sifter
- 2 Mixing Bowls
- a small, heavy-bottomed Pot in which to melt together the butter and chocolate
- a small Strainer, if sprinkling Cocoa on buttered slices or on slices spread with Vanilla Hazelnut Spread
1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Butter the loaf pans and line the bottoms of them with parchment paper.
2. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl.
3. In a small, heavy-bottomed pot, melt together the butter and chocolate. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the sugar.
4. Mix together the beaten egg and milk. Gradually add them to the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl, stirring. Then stir in the butter and chocolate mixture.
5. Divide the batter between the two loaf pans and bake them for 50 minutes.
6. Cool the loaves in the pans for about 10 minutes and then turn them out onto racks.
7. Serving Suggestions: The bread is good accompanied by a small bowl of cocoa powder to sieve on buttered slices or on slices topped with Vanilla Hazelnut Spread.
Vanilla Hazelnut Spread (for about 1 cup)
- 1/4 cup of Hazelnuts, plus a couple of whole nuts reserved to decorate the finished spread
- 7 and 1/2 ounces of Mascarpone, at room temperature
- 1/8 cup of Granulated White Sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon of Vanilla
- a little freshly grated Nutmeg
- a pinch of Ground Cinnamon
- some Cocoa Powder to sieve over the spread is optional
- a Pan or Baking Tray on which to roast the nuts
- a Bowl and Spoon for mixing the spread
- a small Strainer, if sprinkling Cocoa Powder on the finished spread
1. Roast the nuts at 275 F. for 30 minutes. When they are cool enough, remove their skins by rubbing them between the palms of your hands. Cool them completely and roughly chop them.
2. In the bowl, mix together the Mascarpone, the sugar, vanilla, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Then add the cooled chopped hazelnuts:
3. Serve the spread at room temperature. It looks pretty dusted with cocoa powder and decorated with a couple of hazelnuts. Vanilla Hazelnut Spread will keep for a week or more refrigerated.
A Note: Chocolate Bread and Vanilla Hazelnut Spread is the second loaf in the Occasional Menu: A Loaf of Bread and Thou ~ Christmas Season Tea-Time for Two. The recipe is an adaptation of one in Herman Smith’s Stina, the story of a cook, which is available to read here at the Hathi Digital Trust Library.
A Second Note: “The King’s Breakfast” is included in the collection The Complete Poems of Winnie-the-Pooh. Anyone who would enjoy a nostalgic reread of one of their childhood favorites will fine it here at poetryfoundation.org.
An Invitation: You are invited to request suggestions from the diplomatickitchen for your own menus for any occasion by clicking on the feature ‘Ask and Tell’ here or in the Menu at the top of the page. Do you have a menu concept with a gap or two that wants filling…or perhaps you are an expat looking for ways to adapt your recipes to what is available in your temporary home…maybe you are just looking for a new way to use a familiar ingredient or would like suggestions on how to adjust quantities of a recipe from the diplomatickitchen for smaller or larger groups…Replies will be published in ‘Ask and Tell’ or sent by email if you prefer.
© Elizabeth Laeuchli, the diplomatickitchen, 2011-2012