California Walnut & Raspberry Babka


This California Walnut & Raspberry Babka is a perfect way to celebrate summer produce. Plus, the dough and jam can be prepared a night in advance for less prep work.

Total Time
11 Hrs, 30 Mins
Serving Size
1 piece

Total Time

Prep Time
10 Hrs
Cook Time
1 Hr, 30 Mins
Total Time
11 Hrs, 30 Mins


560 cal
Total Fat
29 g
Saturated Fat
13 g
Polyunsaturated Fat
6.868 g
Monounsaturated Fat
7.175 g
110 mg
490 mg
69 g
Dietary Fiber
6 g
Total Sugars
36 g
8 g
50 mg
2 mg
220 mg


Babka Dough

  • 3 scant cups bread flour

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon instant dry yeast

  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

  • 2 eggs + 1 yolk

  • 1/4 cup whole milk

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed

Raspberry Jam

  • 2 pints raspberries, washed and dried

  • 3/4 cup and 2 tablespoons sugar

  • 1/2 lemon

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Walnut Crumble

  • 6 tablespoons tapioca or corn starch

  • 3/4 cup walnuts

  • 1/2 cup sugar in the raw (demerara)

  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted

  • 1 teaspoon salt


Prepare the dough:

  1. Combine flour, sugar, salt, yeast, zest, and cardamom in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment. Mix together.

  2. Add the eggs and milk. Mix on medium-low speed until dough comes together in a soft mass and gluten begins to develop, about 5 minutes.

  3. Add the butter a little bit at a time, mixing until just incorporated after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

  4. Once the butter is fully added, continue mixing the dough until gluten has fully developed. The dough will pull away from the bowl and look elastic and shiny.

  5. Butter or spray a clean bowl with non-stick spray. Form the dough into a ball and place in greased bowl. Cover the bowl and let rise in a warm, draft-free area until doubled in size, about 1 – 1.5 hours.

  6. Place bowl in the refrigerator and retard overnight.

Prepare the raspberry jam:

  1. Place sugar in a large saucepot and cover with water to make sandy. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook to soft ball stage (234-240°F). Add raspberries and cook, pressing the raspberries and scraping the bottom until thickened and liquid is mostly reduced, about 5-8 minutes. (Back of a spoon or frozen plate test will let you know when ready). Remove from heat, add lemon juice and chill until ready for use.

Prepare the walnut crumble:

  1. Place walnuts and starch in food processor. Pulse until mealy. Transfer to a medium sized bowl. Add sugar in the raw, salt, and melted butter. Mix until just combined. Cover and set aside until dough is ready.

  2. The next morning, prepare a 9×5” loaf pan with parchment remove dough from refrigerator. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to a 9×17 inch rectangle.

  3. Spread raspberry jam in an even layer over the dough. Sprinkle with about ¾ of the walnut crumble.

  4. Starting with a long side, roll into a tight coil. Carefully transfer the coil to plastic wrap and place in the freezer for about 10 minutes (This helps to be able to cut and handle the dough better when braiding).

  5. Remove coil from freezer. Using a serrated knife, carefully slice in half lengthwise to expose the filling. Twist the two halves together, bringing them as tightly wound as possible without breaking or smooshing the layers. Fold the twist in half lengthwise so it’s about 9 inches long. Place in prepared pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until puffed but not double the size, about 1 hour.

  6. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare the syrup: Place sugar and water in a small saucepot and bring to a simmer. Once sugar is dissolved, remove from heat.

  7. Once babka is ready, remove plastic and sprinkle the remaining ¼ crumble over the babka. Bake in preheated oven for about 45-55 minutes until risen, browned, and a thermometer in the center reaches an internal temp of between 185°F and 205°F.

  8. Remove from oven and immediately pour the syrup evenly on top of the babka, allowing it to soak in all over.

  9. Cool completely before cutting or serving.