Easter Traditions and German Hefezopf

Whew, another week has come and gone. Everything feels so strange right now, doesn’t it? I’m surprised I even knew it was Friday! How are each of you doing? I know COVID-19 has really thrown some curveballs at us all these last few weeks, but I hope each of you are doing alright! While it’s easy to dwell on all of the bad parts of this situation, I’m trying really hard to find some positives. It makes everything a bit easier in our household. One of the great things right now? We can still have our family’s traditional Easter celebration at home – featuring German Hefezopf! I’m so excited to share a little about our Easter traditions with you… and I want to hear about yours, too!

Easter Traditions

In our house, Easter Sunday starts with a nice breakfast. We eat our delicious German Hefezopf and usually would go to church. This year, we’ll probably live stream our service, but it will still be just as meaningful! And we can even stay in our pajamas! When I lived in Germany, we would always have a luncheon afterwards with our family. Now that we live here in the US, we typically enjoy the day with friends. This year, it will just be our family! Bittersweet, but still special!! When our kids were little, we had an Easter egg hunt too. They LOVED it! It’s always such a good time to see their faces light up when they find all of the hidden treasures.

Although many of our traditions have changed over the year, our Easter bread, German Hefezopf, has never wavered. I love this bread – we only ever have it this time of year!! I learned it while I was living in Germany and we all look forward to it! When my boys were little, they used to help me decorate some eggs to decorate the bread, too. This year, since we’ve all been stuck at home, we had an extra special time working on our German Hefezopf to share with you! Below, you’ll find the recipe! I hope you enjoy it!

Hefezopf mit Ostereier photographed by Helena Goessens Photography


  • 40 gr. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 500 gr. flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp. active dry yeast
  • 70 gr. sugar
  • 200 ml. milk (warm / 75-80ºF)
  • 60 gr. butter (room temperature, soft)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 egg yolk
Hefezopf mit Ostereier for Easter Traditions with Helena Goessens Photography


Mix flour, salt, active dry yeast, sugar, eggs and warm (75-80ºF) milk in the mixer at high speed until the dough is smooth and shiny. Cover the dough with a kitchen towel and let it rest in a warm place for about 1-2 hours (or until the dough has double its size). This step is super important! You need to be very patient, it all depends on the yeast rising the mix flour! (dough / yeast should be in a warm room).

Knead shortly the dough again and add the chocolate chips. Divide the dough in three parts and form a braid. Let it rest again for ca. 30 min. on a baking tray cover with baking paper.

Last step: mix one egg yolk with one tbs. water and brush the braid. Bake at 350ºF for 20-25 min (convection bake oven) or until the braid is golden. Enjoy!

Hefezopf mit Ostereier for Easter Traditions with Helena Goessens Photography (dough before and after doubling its size).
Dough is ready when it has double its size!
Hefezopf mit Ostereier for Easter Traditions with Helena Goessens Photography (before and after)
Form the braid and don’t forget to brush it with one egg yolk and one tablespoon water!
Happy Easter!
Hefezopf mit Ostereier for Easter Traditions with Helena Goessens Photography
Hefezopf mit Ostereier with pink egg photographed by Helena Goessens Photography
about helena goessens photography

Helena Goessens is a maternity, newborn and family photographer based in Dedham, MA. She loves to work with families and little ones in a fun and relaxed atmosphere. Her style is simple and natural and she specializes in capturing those special moments to savor a lifetime. Helena Goessens offers sessions in the comfort of clients homes, outdoors and on location for those special occasions.  If you are looking for a newborn portrait photographer for your next family session, be sure to browse through her newborn portfolio and inquire for availability. Contact her at info@helenagoessens.com  or call her at  617-584-9891.  For more of her work, visit her website at helenagoessens.com.

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Helena Goessens is a Dedham, MA. photographer specializing in baby, children and family photography. Serving Norfolk County, Newton, Needham, Dover, Wellesley, Canton, Boston and surrounding communities.

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