Zwiebach-Denise Heizelman Style

Denise Heizelman
Buhler, Kansas

Traditional Zwiebach

Step 1

1/2 c. warm water
2 T. yeast
1 T. sugar

Mix the yeast, sugar, and water (hot tap water) with a fork until dissolved. Place this mixture into the mixing bowl.

Step 2

2 1/2 c. flour
1 c. powdered milk
2 1/2 c. warm water
2 1/2 c. flour

To the mixing bowl, add 2 1/2 cups flour, powdered milk, and water. Mix (using the whisk attachment of your mixer) and then add the second 2 1/2 cups flour and continue mixing.  Cover and let this dough rest/rise for 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 3

1 c. plus 6 T. margarine
1 T. salt
2 T. sugar

Melt the margarine, add the salt and sugar and mix until dissolved. Add this mixture to the dough.

Step 4

2 1/2 – 3 cups flour

Add the flour and mix (with the dough hook now). Place the dough in a large greased bowl and cover. Allow the dough to rise to double it’s size. Pinch off the dough into a larger (1 1/2 inch) bottom and smaller (1 inch) top piece. Place on a greased pan and let rise. Bake at 400° for 12 – 15 minutes. Yield 4 dozen.

*NOTE: Denise is a long time Adrian’s staff member and she makes some melt in your mouth Zwiebach!  Slather on some butter and homemade jam (or buy some at the Farmers Market) and you experience Heaven on Earth!  Yum!  This is a Mennonite traditional bread (rolls) that is becoming a rare art form.  It really isn’t that hard to do…give it a try!

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3 responses

3 06 2011
Rosie Goertzen

I have been married to my fellow for almost 31 years,now and I still have not made a soft, decent looking Zwiebach. His Mom used to make them for us, but ever since, I have been trying different recipes and techniques, but they just don’t turn out right. I haven’t given up, even tho, I have thrown more out, than I have kept. All breads, taste good when they are warm from the oven, so I just keep trying. I have been using my bread machine, since Xmas, since I thought maybe that might help. It’s alot easier and no quess work, but still no really good ones. My question, was, if you could use milk and cream for this recipe, instead of powdered milk???
I love your store and visit often and look forward to your emails and recipes.
Maybe someone will have some Zwiebach tips for me. Thanks, Vickie

7 06 2011
Vicki Adrian

Hi Rosie…Thank you for your sweet note…I am going to have our resident ZWIEBACH EXPERT, Denise Heizelman answer your zwiebach question. She has made mountains of Z’s and they are delicious! See you next time! Vicki

Dear Rosie, my name is Denise and I was taught how to bake zwiebach 20 years ago when visiting my Grandmother. Of course she never measured anything, so I went behind her and measured the ingredients before she put them in the mixture! As far as milk or cream, the very first time I baked zwiebach on my own, before my grandma tutorial, I used real butter and cream and they turned out like hockey pucks (-; Fast forward to today and I find that the powdered milk works great, and when I had told my grandma that I had used all that stuff, she laughed and said she hadn’t made them that way for years! The key to zwiebach is the kneading process. The ingredients themselves in this case will not make them hard. Let me try to explain…you want to knead the bread until it gets to an elastic feel, while not adding too much flour at at time. I use a mixer with a dough hook, and add a cup at a time, in little bits so flour doesn’t fly everywhere. The point is to not add too much flour! My grandma always said , “you have to learn what it feels like” and she was right, though I didn’t know what I was supposed to be feeling. So now, the best way I can discribe it is that when you feel the dough, take your thumb and first finger and pinch a section for the dough, you should be able to pinch a hole there while the rest of the dough stays in place.

So, don’t worry about kneading too much, worry more about how much flour you are adding each time and then test the dough in between times. I hope this helps! Happy baking.

9 06 2011
Rosie Goertzen

Thanks Vickie and Denise for this helpful advice. I will try again tomorrow and see if I can find out — how the dough is supposed to feel. I always wanted to watch someone mix them up and knead them — but we all know, how busy everyone is and that is not going to happen. This is when I wish I had paid more attention to Mom Goertzen, when she made them every week. Back then, I worked and didn’t think I had time to take lessons. Now – I wish I had. This is so true of many things in life. Thanks once again and I will try the powdered milk, this time.
Rosie G.

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