For me, recipes are not necessarily my own unique creations.

I read something, I saw a picture, I ate something at a restaurant or at someone’s home. Someone mentioned something they had. Or, I wanted something and used what I had on hand because I was too lazy to go to the store.

The ideas comes from somewhere and I spin them.

The Chocolate Bread is a case in point. In one of my daily emails from La Cucina Italiana – in Italian – was a recipe for Pagnotta al cioccolatoChocolate Loaf. I liked the concept, but it wasn’t quite there, for me. I’ve had chocolate breads before and have found them to often be a bit bitter or flat. Chocolate bread should be dessert-like, not sandwich-like, in my not so humble opinion… Time to play!

And play, I did. My first loaf came out pretty good, but I thought it still could be a bit better. It was for Easter Brunch at my niece’s house and I did want it to be at least as good as what everyone else was bringing… I come from a long line of great cooks and the next generation definitely ain’t no slouches – and may even have a leg up on creativity! They’re cooking, I’m in line with my plate! Need to up the ante…

I also think a good Chocolate Bread needs reasonably good chocolate. so I used a 78% Lindt Dark Chocolate Bar and a Cadbury Milk Chocolate Bar – and Hershey’s Cocoa Powder, because I like Hershey’s Cocoa. I’ve bought ridiculously-priced cocoa powders over the years and have found that they’re generally just not worth the money. (I like Guittard Chocolate, as well – especially their Dutch Process Cocoa Powder.) I didn’t want to go higher than 78% – but feel free to if you like a more bitter chocolate flavor.

Here’s the first loaf before the tweaks… Right out of the oven…



This picture is what’s left after three days…



Still tender with lots of nice, chocolate chunks.

Chocolate Bread

  • 450 g AP flour
  • 50 g cocoa powder
  • 25 gr sugar
  • 100 g milk
  • 220 g brewed coffee
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 100 g dark chocolate, chopped into chunks
  • 100 g milk chocolate shaved into fine pieces
  • 12 g salt
  • 12 g instant yeast
  • 1 egg white mixed with a bit of water
  • coarse sugar

Knead the flour, cocoa, salt, sugar, and yeast with the milk, vanilla, and the coffee for at least 10 minutes.

Add the two chocolates and mix well. The milk chocolate will kinda melt into the dough while the dark chocolate remains in chunks.

Place the dough in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours – or overnight.

Form into a round loaf and place it on a floured parchment-lined sheet pan. Cover and let rise for 1 hour at room temperature and then for 2 hours back in the ‘fridge.

Preheat oven to 425°.

Remove loaf from ‘fridge and let rest at room temperature for about 20 minutes.

Brush with egg white and sprinkle with sugar.

Make a slash down the center and bake at 425°F for 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 400°F for another 20 or so minutes.


Look-wise, they were pretty much similar – except for the flour on the first – I over-did it, a bit. But the second was a bit richer by swapping out water for coffee. It’s that old coffee make chocolate chocolatier phenomenon.

If you do a lot of bread baking, you’ll find the dough to be a bit different. A different feel. Just go with it – it’s what it’s like.



Water or coffee – they’ll both work – but you definitely want chunks of good chocolate to bite into now and again.

Chocolate Raspberry Mascarpone

  • 1 8oz container Mascarpone
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp raspberry jam (I used seedless)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Mix and enjoy!

And don’t do as I did…  I forget to bring the Chocolate Raspberry Mascarpone!

It was really good. Sorry, guys…