Brioche

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Brioche
  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water in a small bowl. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

  2. Stir together flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the center, then add eggs and yeast mixture; beat well until dough comes together. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and supple, about 8 minutes.

  3. Flatten dough and spread it with 1/3 of the butter. Knead butter into dough. Repeat this step twice to incorporate remaining butter, allowing dough to rest for a few minutes between additions of butter, about 20 minutes total.

  4. Lightly grease a large bowl with vegetable oil, place dough in the bowl, and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

  5. Punch down dough, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 6 hours to overnight.

  6. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Lightly grease two 9×5-inch loaf pans.

  7. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide dough into 2 equal pieces, form into loaves, and place into the prepared loaf pans. Cover with greased plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.

  8. Make glaze: Beat egg yolk and cold water in a small bowl. Brush on the tops of loaves.

  9. Bake loaves in the preheated oven until the tops are deep golden brown, about 25 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Tips

You can use 1 ounce fresh yeast instead of active dry yeast, if you prefer.
  Topping: Supreme Strawberry

For cheese brioche, knead in 4 ounces grated Gruyere in step 7.

To Make Brioches à Tête:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease muffin tins or fluted brioche molds. Divide dough into the right number of portions for your pan. Take one portion and cut off 1/3 of the dough so that you have two pieces. Roll both pieces into balls and place the larger ball into the muffin tin or mold. Press two fingers into the center of the ball to make a deep well in the center. Shape the small piece of dough into a ball and then roll into an elongated oval. Gently press the narrow end of the oval into the well in the large ball so that only the top part of the oval is visible. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover and let brioche rise until the base has risen to the edge of the pan. Brush the tops with egg wash. Bake in the preheated oven until deep golden brown, about 10 minutes.

Editor’s Note:

To make brioche in a stand mixer, combine water, yeast, flour, sugar, and eggs in a mixing bowl. Mix on low speed with the dough hook until dough is fully developed, 10 to 15 minutes, scraping the dough down occasionally. With the mixer running, gradually add softened butter, one tablespoon at a time, mixing well after each addition. Place dough in a greased bowl and proceed with the recipe.

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