2½ cups plain flour, plus extra, to knead
¼ cup caster sugar
7g sachet dry yeast
2 eggs, beaten
¾ cup warm water
70g butter, cubed, at room temperature, plus extra, to serve
⅔ cup (90g) finely chopped pecans
100g dark cooking chocolate, chopped
¼ cup icing sugar mixture, sifted
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp finely grated orange zest
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
Sift flour into a large bowl. Add sugar and dry yeast, then stir until combined. Add eggs and water, then stir until mixture forms a dough. Knead dough on a floured surface for 3 minutes or until smooth.
In a lightly oiled bowl (to avoid sticking), gradually knead in butter, 2 cubes at a time. Cover and sit in a warm place for 2 hours or until dough has tripled in size.
To make chocolate filling, put chocolate and butter in a medium glass heatproof bowl and stand over a medium saucepan of simmering water, making sure bottom of bowl doesn’t touch water. Stir until melted. Remove from heat. Stir in icing sugar, cinnamon and zest until combined. Set aside.
Punch down dough. Knead on a floured surface until just smooth. Roll out to 40cm x 28cm. Spread chocolate mixture over dough, leaving a 2cm border at 1 short end. Moisten that end with water. Sprinkle over pecans. Roll up from the short side, ending at moist end. Press edges together to seal.
Slide dough onto an oven tray and refrigerate for 15 minutes, to set chocolate and make it easier to cut. Grease and line a 23.5cm x 10.5cm loaf pan with baking paper. Cut dough in half lengthways (down the centre of roll) to expose chocolate layers. Plait two halves together by crossing them over. Put babka in loaf pan, tucking in ends. Set aside in a warm place for 30 minutes or until babka has risen slightly. Preheat oven to 190°C. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden.
To make glaze, put sugar and water in a small saucepan over a medium-high heat. Stir to dissolve, then simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Pour and brush glaze on top of hot babka. Cool. Serve with extra butter.