The Kitchn: Czech yourself: Authentic recipe for Christmas kolaches brings a taste of Europe into your home for the holidays
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
3 1/2 to 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup jam
Stir the yeast, water and sugar together in a large bowl. Let stand until yeast is bubbly, about 5 minutes.
Bring the milk just to a boil in a small pot over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in the butter to cool. Pour over yeast mixture and add the salt.
Add 2 cups of flour, stirring well, then stir in the egg. Stir in an additional 1 1/2 cups flour, using your hands to finish bringing the dough together as needed. Knead, adding up to remaining 1/4 cup additional flour as needed, until the dough is smooth and bounces back slightly when pressed on with a finger, about 5 minutes. Cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Grease a baking sheet and set aside. Break off 1 golf ball-sized piece of dough at a time and shape each into a 3-inch-wide, 1-inch-thick circle. Place onto the prepared baking sheet and let rise for 20 minutes.
Using a finger, press a wide well in the center of each dough round. Fill each round with 1 teaspoon jam. Let rise while arranging a rack in the middle of the oven heating to 350 F.
Bake until just lightly browned, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer to wire racks, cool, and serve.