Saturday, May 29, 2010

Buttery Brioche

I've always liked the flavor and look of brioche and love brioche french toast. I even just like the word and "brioche" is just such fun to say. It's said to be one of the most difficult breads to make and while it takes a while for the dough to rise and it's more work to shape the different loaves, it's not too difficult. I happened to have some of the pretty fluted molds that I've never used, so along with a guide from Fine Cooking magazine and a little time on my hands, I tackled brioche.

It is a very buttery bread with a 1/2 pound of butter. What seemed like a greasy mess while I was mixing it turned out to be a beautiful smooth and elastic dough.

After mixing all the ingredients together in the mixer, you had to knead and fold it a few times before forming it into a perfect ball to prepare it for rising.

First I let it rise at room temperature in a bowl for about an hour.

Then, I put it in the refrigerator to rise overnight, which the guide indicated would provide the best flavor.

While I let the dough come to room temperature the next day, I buttered the pretty brioche molds.
When the dough was warm, I cut the dough into sixteen (almost) equal pieces and weighed them out to try to get them as consistent in size as possible.
I first formed the dough for the small brioche tins to make brioche rolls, but I only had three of these molds. They weren't perfect, but I thought they looked quite pretty for my first try.

I then rolled out the other pieces for the large brioche mold.

I still had some dough, so I made a few little loaves as well.

Now that they were all together, it was time for them to rise again for about an hour.

After they had their final rising, I brushed on an egg wash and they were ready to bake. They only needed to bake for about 20 minutes and turned out a lovely golden brown.
We enjoyed the rolls for breakfast with jam and Audrey was calling them "cupcakes."

The loaves turned out nice as well and I made french toast for breakfast another morning. I think I'll use the large brioche mold for dinner parties for a pretty arrangement of dinner rolls that people can pluck off. This was well worth the time and has multiple uses. It would be great in a bread pudding or to use for stuffing as well.

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