I have a dilemma. There are so many kinds of breads that I have been wanting to bake. The list is pretty long. My problem is my kids like only sweet breads. My husband likes spicy breads. No one except me wants to eat rustic breads like ciabbatta or baguettes or sandwich breads. So, I am trying to bake sweet breads to shorten the list whenever I can.
I had instantly fallen in love with this bread when I saw the pictures on many blogs. The group 'Bread Baking Babes' had baked this bread some months back. I finally baked it today. Taste was awesome, so I was told. You decide for yourself how good it is.
One Year back - Iyengar Bakery Toast / Indian Bruschetta
Adapted from 'BBA by Peter Reinhart' via Breadbasketcase
For the sponge:
All purpose flour - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 1 TBSP
Warm Water - 1/2 cup
Instant yeast - 2 1/4 tsp
For the dough:
All of the sponge
All purpose flour - 3 - 3 1/4 cups (Use 3 cups and add the remaining only if needed)
Sugar - 6 TBSP
Warm water - 6 TBSP
Egg - 2 large (Could substitute with thick yogurt or sourcream or blended soft tofu for an eggless version)
Salt - 1 tsp
Butter - 4 TBSP
Powdered milk - 1/4 cup (See Notes)
Vanilla Extract - 1 tsp
Lemon extract - 1 tsp
Orange extract - 1 tsp
1 Large egg mixed with couple of splashes of milk or water (Or you could use equal amounts of milk, oil and a bit of sugar)
Combine all the ingredients mentioned in the 'For the sponge' section. Let it sit till bubbly. It took about 45 minutes for me since I used warm water. If you use the room temperature water, it might take up to an hour and a half to do the same. If you are going to make this bread by the mixer, check out the source link for the details.
Dough using bread machine:
Add butter chopped into small bits, sugar, dry milk, 2 eggs, salt and water to the bread machine. Top it off with the sponge and add the flour (only 3 cups in the beginning). Turn the machine on the dough setting. Check after 10 minutes to see if you need to add some of the reserved flour to adjust the consistency. The kneaded dough should be soft and almost satiny and not sticky at all. If you have worked with brioche dough before, it almost feels the same. When the dough cycle completes, remove the dough on to the lightly floured surface. Divide it into two parts. Grease two 9 " cake pans or pie plates generously with butter. Shape the dough into round and form a boule. Place on the prepared pan seam side down. Cover with an oiled plastic wrap and let it rise till it doubles and fills the pan. It can take from 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Brush the loaves with egg wash. Bake for 45 - 50 minutes. They brown very fast, but don't be tempted to take them out. Rotate the pan half way to make sure they bake and brown evenly. When you take the loaf out, brush with butter if desired. Color of this baked bread is very rich mahagony color. It is not burnt or over baked. Cool on the wire rack and slice only after it has cooled completely. This makes the best breakfast bread, good for french toast and to make bread pudding. It might look as if it is a hard bread, but is not. It is a very soft and tender bread.
If you don't have dry milk powder, just use milk instead of water in the dough part. Do not use imitation extracts in this bread. If you don't have pure lemon, orange extracts, skip it or use about a TBSP of zest. I tried to use the rolling pin to make indentations so that they bake up like flowers. But, My indentation was not strong enough and when in the oven, bread rose above that leaving just a line as a pattern.
This bread goes to Susan's Yeastspotting.