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Cheeseburger in Paradise Babka

I guess it's time... I have a confession to make... I hope it won't change the way any of you view me or my recipes.

My husband and I have recently rediscovered our love for Jimmy Buffet, and I am afraid to say that I think we now fall under the category of fans classified as Parrot Heads!

Truth be told, we both grew up listening to the music of Jimmy Buffett, my dad and my in-laws both love the man from Mississippi. I knew all of the words to Volcano and Cheeseburger in Paradise by the time I was five years old. Fast forward 25 years later and you'll catch Noah and I driving down the coast with the sunroof open, listening Margaritaville radio.

Every time the song Cheeseburger in Paradise comes on the radio I think of the time that I saw Mr. Buffett live at Wrigley field. He knew his audience was largely Jewish (as is the population who lives around Wrigley Field), and so he changed the words to "hamburger in paradise" to stay kosher! This recipe will have to be made with impossible burger meat to make it kosher, but I hope you enjoy!


½ Cup milk (or milk alternative), warmed

1 Tablespoon instant yeast

¼ Cup sugar

1 Egg

1 Egg yolk

½ Teaspoon kosher salt

2 Cups flour

1 Teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

7 Tablespoons butter at room temperature

Whisk egg, egg yolk, sugar, garlic powder, black pepper, and salt in a large bowl until smooth and slightly pale in color. Whisk in warmed milk and yeast until combined.


Transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Mix in the flour until almost fully mixed. Add butter about 1 tablespoon at a time (make sure it’s at room temperature!) and mix until incorporated. The dough should be smooth and slightly sticky.


Turn out the dough and knead for just a few minutes until very smooth. Transfer to a greased bowl and let rise for 1 ½ - 2 hours until doubled.


1 Pound ground beef (or impossible meat)

2 Teaspoons seasoned salt

1 Large white onion

1 Cup dill pickles, chopped

1 1/2 Cups medium cheddar cheese, chopped

2 Tablespoons yellow mustard

While the dough is rising, dice the onion into 1 inch pieces. Cook in a pan over medium heat until the onions begin to caramelize, about 15-20 minutes. Once done cooking, remove from heat and place in the fridge to cool.

Cook the ground beef in a pan over medium heat, sprinkling with seasoned salt about halfway through the cooking process. Once done cooking, remove from heat and place in the fridge to cool.

Once the dough is done proofing, place on a floured surface and roll into a large rectangle. The dough should be as thin as you can get it. This ensures the most swirls inside the bread.

Sprinkle all filling ingredients over the dough. It is going to be a very full babka! Starting on the edge closest to you begin to tightly roll the dough away from you until you run out of dough and are left with a log of dough. Pinch the ends together to ensure no filling leaks out while baking.

Place in a loaf pan lined with parchment paper. Let rise for an additional 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit.


1 Egg white

2 Tablespoons ketchup

Sesame Seeds

Mix the ketchup and egg white together. Using a pastry brush, brush over the top of the babka. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake for 55-60 minutes.

Serve warm.

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