Friday, 20 March 2015

Brioche Loaf.

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

I think you should bake a loaf of brioche this weekend.

Seriously, you should. It's what I did last Saturday on a lazy day at home. After all, a simple brioche was my baking challenge for March. You can see January here and don't even ask about February.


Anyway, I was a bit weary of making brioche. First off, I thought it would be really sweet (it isn't - only a tablespoon of sugar in this recipe) and second, the butter content seemed a bit extreme. But it wasn't - only 175 grams to make two loaves.

But the real happy discovery was that unlike normal yeast dough, there is no messing about here with getting liquid to the correct temperature in order to activate the yeast. Here, everything (apart from the butter) should be chilled! 

I was suspicious. I've always activated yeast with warm water or milk, and here the recipe told me to use chilled milk and eggs. Not to worry though, everything worked out perfect. A really simple mixing of the dough followed by resting the dough in the fridge for a few hours, shaping, proving again, and then baking means that you can begin this in the morning and have it ready in the evening. Perfect for a relaxed bit of Sunday baking!

And then you can enjoy it for breakfast the next morning. And, what a breakfast it will be! This brioche is perfect, toasted with a little butter. But it also makes a killer French toast and don't even get me started on the bread pudding.

Yeast Dough, previously: DoughnutsCinnamon currant breadCinnamon rolls White bloomer bread 

A Simple List of Ingredients:
1. Strong White Bread Flour
2. Salt
3. Caster Sugar
4. Dried Yeast
5. Milk
6. Eggs
7. Unsalted Butter

Bismillah, let's begin!


First job, get the dough together. I used a stand mixer with a dough hook but you can also mix by hand.


The first ingredient is flour. But not just any old flour - this is strong white bread flour. And it's great for making bread because it's stronger than normal flour. Hence the name.


So, to your bowl, add in 375 grams Strong White Bread Flour.


Then, measure out 1/2 teaspoon Salt.


And, toss it in.


For a tiny bit of sweetness, 1 tablespoon Caster Sugar.


In that goes too.


Grab a spatula and give everything a quick mix.


Next, the yeast!


You'll need 7 grams Dried Yeast and if you use these handy little sachets like I do, sprinkle the entire sachet in.


Once the yeast is in, another quick stir and then, we're going to add our wet ingredients.


First up, milk. 


Pour in 4 tablespoons Milk, chilled.


Then, grab 4 large Eggs, chilled.


And, crack them in too. Ps. I love a good egg action shot!


Next, pop your bowl onto the mixer and using the dough attachment, get mixing!


Set the machine on a low speed and let it go until you have a very soft and sticky dough. By hand, just mix until you get the same.


Next, the butter!


Measure out 175 grams Unsalted Butter, diced and at room temperature.


Set a timer for 6 minutes, and pop the mixer onto low. During this time, gradually add a few cubes of butter at a time until they have all been mixed into the dough.


Once the 6 minutes are over and all the butter is in, your dough should look a little something like this.


Smoother than before but still very sticky and soft.


Next, we are going to chill the dough and let it rise in the fridge for 2 hours. I chose to remove the dough and place it into a smaller bowl, but feel free to leave it in the same one.


Once the dough is in a bowl which is big enough to let it double in size ..


(a spatula helped to get it out + don't mind my pear snack on the side)


... place the bowl into a clean plastic bag.


Tie it loosely and place into the fridge for 2 hours.


After 2 hours, take it out.


This is how it should look - slightly risen and nearly doubled in size.


Flour your knuckles and punch the dough down to deflate.


Then, back into the plastic bag it goes and into the fridge for 1 hour.


After the hour, take it out and it's time to shape!


Take two loaf tins. Each tin weighs 195 grams and is 20cm x 10cm.


Grease both tins very well (I used a vegetable oil spray) and line with baking paper, if you wish. I didn't because these tins are quite good with not letting things stick.


Lightly flour a surface, and pop your dough onto it. 


It will still be slightly sticky.


Shape it into a rough ball.


And, slice into two equal halves.


Take each half, and using the tin as a guide ..


.. roll into rough rectangles. And, if there are flecks of butter in your dough, don't panic. It's all flavour, my friend.


Starting from a short side, roll each rectangle into a Swiss roll shape.


Pinch the seams and edges together so that nothing is flapping open.


Place into the prepared tin.


And, repeat with the second half.


Now, it's time to let these beauties rise for a final time before baking.


Put them back into the plastic bag, loosely tie and place in warm place for 1 hour to 1 and 1/2 hours or until risen and double in size.


About 10 minutes before baking, pre-heat the oven to 220C or Gas Mark 7
Beat 1 Egg for the egg-wash.


Once risen, remove from the bag.


Lightly brush the tops with the beaten egg.


Bake at 220C or Gas Mark 7 for 15 minutes. Then, turn the oven down to 180C or Gas Mark 4 and bake for 24-30 minutes until a deep, golden brown.


A little something like this.


Check if the bread is cooked by tapping the bottom - it should sound hollow. Otherwise pop it back in for 5 minutes.


Once baked, place onto wire racks to cool completely.


I left mine to cool overnight and the next blue skied morning ...


.. they were perfect!


All that's left is to grab a bread knife and give them a slice.


Pop the kettle on and get the your favourite spread out - it's time for breakfast!


This brioche is amazing. With a beautiful golden crust outside and the softest centre - it's so good. Almost like cake. 


Enjoy with sweet toppings (Nutella, honey, jam) and even savoury (salted butter, scrambled eggs, fried eggs) - this brioche is a winner all round!

P.s. We ate one loaf and froze the second. Just wrap in foil and pop into the freezer - defrost when needed.

Full Written Recipe:


Brioche Loaf.

Prep Time: About 5 hours
Bake Time: About 40 minutes
Makes: 2 loaves

Ingredients
375 grams Strong White Bread Flour
½ teaspoon Salt
1 tablespoon Caster Sugar
7 grams Dried Yeast
4 tablespoons Milk, chilled
4 large Eggs, chilled
175 grams Unsalted Butter, diced and at room temperature
1 Egg, beaten – for an egg wash before baking

Method

Into the bowl of a stand mixer or a mixing bowl, place the flour, salt and sugar. Mix.
Add the dried yeast and mix.

Pour in the milk and crack in the eggs. Using a dough hook or by hand, mix on a low speed until you get a very soft and sticky dough.

Then, set a timer for 6 minutes and let the machine knead the dough on a low speed. During this time, gradually add a few cubes of the butter at a time until it is well incorporated into the dough.

Once all the butter is added and the 6 minutes are up, the dough will be super sticky. I transferred mine to a smaller bowl and used a spatula to help.

Place the dough into a bowl which is big enough to let it double in size. Place the bowl into a clean plastic bag and tie loosely. Put into the fridge for 2 hours.

After 2 hours, flour your knuckles and punch the dough down to deflate. Pop back into the bag and into the fridge for 1 hour.

Then, take 2 loaf tins. Each weighs 195 grams and is 20cm x 10cm. Grease very well and line with paper too, if you wish.

Split the dough into two. Roll each half into a rough rectangle which measures similar to the tin – use the tin as a guide.

Roll each rectangle like a Swiss roll from the shortest side. Pinch the seams and edges together and place into the loaf tin. Repeat with the second half.

Place the tins into a clean plastic bag and tie loosely. Put into warm place for 1 hour to 1 and ½ hours until risen and doubled in size.

Pre-heat the oven to 220C or Gas Mark 7 about 10 minutes before baking.

Gently brush the risen loaves with the beaten egg and bake for 15 minutes.

Then, turn the oven temperature down to 180C or Gas Mark 4 and bake for 24 to 30 minutes or until a deep, golden brown.

To check if they are baked, tap the bottom of each loaf. If baked, it should sound hollow. If it doesn’t, pop back in for another 5 minutes.

Place the loaves onto a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Then, slice and enjoy!


This Time One Year Ago:


This Time Two Years Ago:


Keep me in your duas, please, and enjoy your brioche!

Wasalaam!

8 comments

  1. Wa alaykum assalaam wa rahmatullah wa baarakatuhu, this looks simple stunning! Allahumma Baarik, putting it on my pinterest board to bake very soon, in shaa Allah

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. jazakillah khair! hope you enjoy it as much as we did! :)

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  2. Waalaikumussalam warahmatullah wabarakathuhu... I am staring at that brioche... they look amazing.... my kids love bread and it is their staple everyday to school but I have never baked them at home since they almost need a full day for their rising and I normally don't find so much time... but this one is tempting me so much and the mention of freeze is tempting me even more... bookmarked!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. jazakillah khair! your kids will love this. and with the rising, you can do other things in the meantime, trust me, this is a stunning bread with very little effort. and, we just defrosted one loaf and made bread pudding out of it! :)

      Delete
  3. The best moment is when I choose my spread: apricot jam, cherry jam, strawberry jam, chocolate spread or biscoff crunchy? Impossible to have just one slice!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree! My current favourite is the biscoff spread - so good!

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  4. We don't have strong white bread flour available in our country. Can I use all purpose flour? Or maybe you can do a brioche bread recipe with all purpose flour.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have never tried all-purpose but there is no reason why it shouldn't work. I will try my best with a recipe but I am pretty sure this one will be fine.

      Delete

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