Tasty Zopf bread from Ithala

Zopf literally translates to braid. This braided bread is a Swiss bread to be enjoyed at breakfast! It was the perfect treat for the conservation volunteers during an admin day at Ithala Game Reserve in South Africa.


1 kg flour

1 ½ tablespoon of salt

2 packets of yeast

550 ml of lukewarm milk

150 g melted butter

1 egg yolk


Put all ingredients in one bowl (except the egg yolk) and mix together.

Knead the zopf dough for 5 minutes.

Leave the dough to prove in a covered bowl for 1 hour.

Zopf dough in a bowl

Once the dough has doubled in size, pull the dough in half in order to make the two breads.

From 1 half, make 2 long strands of dough.

Place these strands of dough on a lightly floured counter in the shape of a cross.

zopf dough being braided

The vertical strand should be on top of the other strand.

Braid the strands together.

braided zopf bread

Annika Zimmermann zopf bread

Conservation volunteer Annika Zimmermann with the zopf breadMix the egg yolk with a little bit of milk and paint the outside of the breads.

Let it rise for another 15 minutes.

Place in a preheated oven at 390ºF / 200ºC for 45-55 minutes.

To check if the bread is ready, take the bread out and knock it gently with your fist. If it sounds hollow, your bread is ready.

Enjoy with marmalade jam and a cup of tea!

Photographs by wildlife monitor Lisa Thomas

Conservation volunteers: Annika Zimmermann, Christine Damico and Linda de Haan