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Bolo Rei Recipe

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Yeast Preparation:

25g active yeast
2 tsp granulated sugar
100g all-purpose flour
75ml warm water

Fruit Mixture:

250g finely chopped assorted crystallized fruit
100g seedless raisins
1 tsp finely grated lemon rind
1 tsp finely grated orange rind
2 tablespoons port wine
1 tablespoon rum


150g butter
150g granulated sugar
3 eggs
2 egg yolks
600g all-purpose plain wheat flour
75ml warm milk
50g chopped almonds
50g chopped walnuts
25g pine nuts

Optional: a dried broad bean (fava) wrapped in greaseproof paper or a small coin or trinket wrapped in greaseproof paper


Crystallized fruit (pineapple, cherries, figs, etc.)
1 egg (for egg wash)
Icing sugar (for dusting)


Prepare the Yeast Mixture:

Combine yeast, granulated sugar, flour, and warm water in a bowl. Mix to form a smooth paste. Let it rest in a warm place for about 30 minutes, or until doubled in size.
Fruit Mixture:

In a separate bowl, mix crystallized fruits, raisins, lemon and orange rind, port wine, and rum. Allow it to soak.

Creating the Dough:

Cream butter and sugar together in a large bowl until smooth. Gradually add eggs and egg yolks, alternating with small amounts of flour to prevent curdling.

Blend in half of the remaining flour with the milk. Stir in the yeast mixture until evenly combined.

Fold in almonds, walnuts, pine nuts, and the soaked fruit mixture.

Gradually add enough of the remaining flour to form a sticky, bread-like dough, ensuring fruits and nuts are evenly incorporated.

Cover and leave the dough to rise in a warm place for about an hour, or until doubled.

Shaping the Dough:

Knead the dough briefly, then shape it into a round loaf on a greased baking tray.

Form a wreath shape by making a hole in the center, approximately 25 cm wide. An oiled food jar can be used to maintain the hole’s shape.

Introduce the wrapped broad bean and coin or trinket into the dough at different points.

Topping and Final Rise:

Decorate the dough with crystallized fruits. Brush with beaten egg.

Allow the wreath to rise for another hour in a warm place, or until doubled in size.


Preheat the oven to 190°C. Remove the jar and bake the wreath for about 40 minutes, or until golden brown.

Cool and dust with icing sugar before serving.

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