Bread of the Dead

    4 hours 25 minutes

    Called "Pan de Muerto" in Mexico, this bread is baked for the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration. It's a sweet bread with orange rind and anise seed.

    130 people made this

    Serves: 15 

    • 60g butter
    • 4 tablespoons low-fat milk
    • 4 tablespoons warm water (45 degrees C)
    • 410g plain flour
    • 1 1/4 teaspoons dried active baking yeast
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 teaspoons anise seed
    • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
    • 2 eggs, beaten
    • 2 teaspoons orange zest
    • Glaze
    • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
    • 4 tablespoons orange juice
    • 1 tablespoon orange zest
    • 2 tablespoons caster sugar

    Preparation:40min  ›  Cook:45min  ›  Extra time:3hours rising  ›  Ready in:4hours25min 

    1. Heat the butter and milk together in a medium saucepan until the butter melts. Remove from heat and add warm water. The mixture should be around 45 degrees C.
    2. In a large bowl, combine 1/3 of the flour, yeast, salt, anise seed and 4 tablespoons sugar. Beat in the warm milk mixture. Add the eggs and orange zest then beat until well combined. Stir in the remaining flour, a little at a time, until the dough is soft.
    3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Place the dough into a lightly oiled bowl covered with cling film, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size. This will take about 1 to 2 hours.
    4. Punch the dough down and shape it into a large round loaf with a round knob on top. Place dough onto a baking tray, loosely cover with cling film then let rise in a warm place for about 1 hour or until just about doubled in size.
    5. Bake in a preheated 180 degrees C for about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven let cool slightly then brush with glaze.
    6. Glaze

    7. In a small saucepan combine the remaining sugar, orange juice and orange zest. Bring to a boil over medium heat and boil for 2 minutes. Brush over top of bread while still warm. Sprinkle glazed bread with sugar.

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    Reviews in English (118)


    Took shortcuts. I baked a practice loaf but didn't need to as it turned out excellent. Good texture and flavour. I also used my bread machine on the dough cycle. Couldn't be easier, which is a good thing because my son is baking the next loaf.  -  18 Jul 2008


    I made this for my Spanish class. It is sweet on the outside and a wholesome taste on the inside. I've had it once before, and my professor said it was excellent  -  18 Jul 2008


    My daughter made this for her Spanish class. It was so easy. She got it right on the first try!  -  18 Jul 2008