4 teaspoonfuls of yeast
1/3 cup of lukewarm water
3/4 cup evaporated milk or whole milk
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup melted butter
5 egg yolks
4 cups bread flour
grated mild white or yellow cheese, white sugar, softened butter for top or filling
1. Prepare the yeast mixture, add 1 tbsp. of sugar (from the 1/2 cup sugar) and dissolve it well. Add the yeast and mix it well. Set this aside and leave the yeast to rise for about 15 min. It is important to keep the right temperature otherwise the yeast will not rise.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients well. Make a well in the middle. When the yeast is ready, pour the yeast and the other liquid ingredients into the well together with the eggs and butter. Mix it well using a spatula or best with your clean hand.
3. Once thoroughly mix, sprinkle extra flour on a clean flat surface then start kneading. The correct way to knead the dough is to punch the dough. Press the heels of your hands into the dough, pushing forward slightly. This is called “punching” the dough and helps the gluten start working. Continue doing this until the dough is slightly springy. You may need to add more flour if the dough is sticky. Knead for at least 10 min. or till the dough is elastic.
4. Form the dough into a ball and place it back on a greased bowl. Cover it with warm damp cloth and leave it to rise for a minimum of 1 hour at room temperature. Best to leave it overnight.
5. After 1 hour, check the dough if it doubled in size, then it’s ready. Place the dough in a floured surface. Remove the excess air by punching the dough.
6. Cut the dough into 2 roll it like a log and cut the dough to 1 1/2 to 2 inches according to our desired size.
7. Flatten the dough using a rolling pin, then spread butter or ube haleya (optional). Sprinkle some cheese over the painted area then seal the dough by folding opposite directions and rolling it until a long cylindrical shape is formed (about 14 inches in length).
8. Start forming the spiral Ensaymada shape by crossing the two opposite ends of the dough. The end should be tucked in under dough. (see video for better comprehension).
9. Place in a baking tray and continue the procedure till all the dough is consumed. Leave it to rise again for a minimum of 30-60 minutes before baking. Pre-heat the oven to 160C and bake the ensaymada for 15-17 minutes .
10. After baking, let it cool down completely then brush butter on top and dip it upside down in a sugar bowl. Sprinkle with grated cheese on top and reay to serve. Enjoy!