So I didn’t give up, and it paid off this time. Last time the result was not a total disaster, but it needed a huge improvement, specially in the texture of it, too dense, crust too hard, so I’m giving it another go here with a much lighter recipe, only 10:1 flour to butter, not 2:1, the result was definitely an improvement, and it made one thing pretty clear, mixing butter and flour isn’t a straight forward as I thought, actually I need to revisit that older recipe and mix the butter into cold dough, cold ingredients, cold water, and never let the dough get warm enough that the butter separates and the whole thing turns into an oily mess. Constant trips to the freezer, I’ve tried this with pastry dough and it works really well. Allow dough to rise in the fridge, and NEVER let the butter melt, EVER (although i just saw another recipe for brioche that uses vegetable oil and melted butter and the pics look awesome, so not entirely sure anymore!)
Anyways, here’s my second try:
200 water or 1 C (the cup i have, not the 230g cup, so check)
50g milk or 3 1/2 tbsp
60g sugar or 4 tbsp
8g or 1 packet
lukewarm liquids, add yeast, let foam rise till height of the liquid volume.
400g flour or little less than 3 1/2 C
10g sea salt or 2 tsp
add cubed butter into flour+salt mix by hand squeezing cubes into flour until incorporated.
add liquid into batter plus:
add 60g egg or 1 egg 🙂
knead until awesome, I used a wooden spatula in circular motion in the bowl, I could totally see the gluten stretching and becoming very pliable.. 20 mins or so, adding flour as needed, then finished it by hand, it was hard work!!! but paid off. I even tried this window pane test, which I had read about in some bakery sites, it worked!
1st rise (1 hour or until double the size), push air bubbles out and 2nd rise (over night or 8 hrs in the fridge, this time it rose just fine), then:
Sweet egg wash:
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp water
(I considered adding a 1/4 tsp of baking soda to intensify the maillard reaction, but i didnt, though i tried it on a different situation and the result was pretty great)
Mix well and and brush the loaf generously. In a bread baking pan, buttered, place loaf, place in a preheated oven at 350f-400f (really depends on the oven), for about half hour. Here’s what came out of the oven, yes, im very proud!
Never expected this thing to be so friggin’ good, spongy, and soft!
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