Sunday, September 30, 2012

Brioche

I have baked the more humble cousin, the challah, on multitudes of occasions over the years, but never the more aristocratic Brioche. Although there are some idiosyncrasies to brioche making, I found the process much easier than I've imagined.  I made a couple of batches but even within one batch I experimented with different shaping techniques my research came up with. I am really in awe at how different proportions of flour, water, eggs, yeast and butter will produce such a different depth of flavor and texture in bread.

This post is a part of my collaboration with Red Star Yeast. I found RSY's original brioche recipe super authentic in rich buttery flavor and flaky crumb. This mini brioche was perfect in the morning along with my cup of coffee.
I am sharing here some highlights and videos from my research that will demystify baking brioche:

Michel Roux's brioche video which I found absolutely fascinating. Watch his technique, it's incredible.

Bread in Five's video of mixing brioche dough in a stand mixer This technique does take the mystique out of brioche making and makes it accessible for the home baker.

Nancy Silverton on Julia Child Creme Fraiche Custrad Brioche Tart video. Watch the tips Silverton shares as she makes the dough.

Leite's Culinaria's pictorial brioche guide by Sarabeth's Bakery.
These links really give you a well rounded perspective on brioche making. If you do not have brioche molds, you can bake the brioche in muffin tins. You can also bake as a loaf, but allow approximately 10 minutes extra in baking.
Brioche
original Red Star Yeast recipe
makes about 16

Ingredients:
3 1/2 cups flour
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (1 packet, 1/4 oz)
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter softened (2 sticks butter)
4 eggs
1 egg yolk
1 tbls milk

In a large bowl combine two cups flour, yeast, sugar and salt, mix well. In a sauce pan heat butter and water until warm (120F-130F) and add to the flour mixture. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix by hand until smooth. Gradually stir the remaining flour to make a very soft dough. Cover bowl with a plastic wrap and refrigerate from 6-12 hours.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Punch down dough and divide into three parts. Keep two parts in the refrigerator until ready to shape. Divide each third to six parts. Cut off 1/4 from each part. On a lightly floured surface, shape each large and small piece into a smooth ball. Press large ball into a greased brioche or muffin tin. Make a large indentation in the middle of the large ball and press the small ball into the indentation. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30 minutes. Whisk egg yolk and milk together, brush the top of the brioche gently and bake for about 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Remove from muffin or brioche tins and let cool.

Continue working with the next two batches as stated above.

Red Star Yeast Series:
Cinnamon Buns
Yeast Pancakes
Multigrain Oatmeal Bread
Marbled Rye Bread
Dark Pumpernickel Rye Bread
Jalapeno Cheddar Bread 
Challa

Challah Posts: 
Honey Challah
Spelt Honey Challah anc Chocolate babka
Quince Honey Challah Knots
Challa

42 comments :

  1. Love the chalkboard background :) thanks for all the links and videos, I got samples of red star yeast's platinum yeast and plan on baking bread next week. I might bake challah AND brioche :) thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. TY Pandi so sweet. I can't wait to see your creations!

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  2. Absolutely gorgeous brioche! I love your molds and the chalkboard background!

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    1. TY Laura. I just found a good excuse to buy the molds. Gotta have them! :)

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  3. What a fun post, and love the chalkboard! I have only made brioche once, but really need to make some again soon:-) Yum, Hugs, Terra

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    1. TY Terra! You absolutely should. So decadent! :)

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  4. Wow! It has risen to perfection Shulie! I love a buttery brioche with my coffee too.

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    1. Heehee Baby girl I wish we could have coffee and brioche together!

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  5. So pretty and tempting! I love the presentation.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  6. Looks so cute! I'm yet to try baking brioche, I keep getting excited when I see it, maybe I should make it this weekend. Will try your recipe :)

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    1. Yes, let me know the results. Only thing I used only 1/2 teaspoon instead of a full from original recipe! :)

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  7. Terrific post; beautiful shots and so informative!

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  8. Fantastic looking brioche and I loooooooooooove brioche
    I make challah-brioch sometimes
    Happy sukkut Shulie

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  9. That's the 2nd time I saw a chalkboard background today in a post and I really like the look-so much fun and different. Lovely molds and really nice brioche, Shulie. Thanks for sharing all the brioche links:)

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  10. Really? Let me know if you remember which. I would love to see it! :) TY Lora was so fun to bake these! :)

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  11. looks perfect and what a cool idea to use the chalkboard as a prop genius

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    1. TY Rebecca. Borrowed the chalk from my neighbors who have elementary school kids. They ended up letting me keep the chalk! :)

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  12. I am so glad to find a recipe with dry yeast! My friend from France gave me a recipe using a yeast "cake".. which I haven't been able to find in our local stores.. and I have just been too lazy to order it. And I can't wait to delve into the videos! Thanks for sharing!

    P.S. Thanks for your comment on my prop photo.. it made my day! :)

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    1. TY Laurie. I find that most people do not use fresh yeast here so when I find it I find it suspect. Maybe spoiled, expired. Happy you saw this recipe.

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  13. Hi Shulie!

    Thats the first time I heard of challah.

    thanks for sharing all those useful links, its going to come handy. My mum makes brioche but i had never tried to bake them by myself. As you mentioned it looks more difficult then it is. Love your pictures by they way, gives it all great feeling, and I am thinking about going into the kitchen and trying out your recipe.

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    1. Really?! :) It's Eastern European origin, Jewish bread. I should look up details for accuracy measures. It is much simpler than I thought! :) Let me know how yours turned out!

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  14. You're brioche are almost too cute to eat! :) I just watched Michael Roux's video - it is so good! I like that they showed 2 ways to form the brioche. -L

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    1. TY Linda! I ambarked on a brioche project. I loved the Roux's vid as well. The quickness to his fingers, technique! :)

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  15. i have only heard that when you try them you just can't stop.. and then make them again and again :D

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  16. Just beautiful...and the chalkboard is so much fun. There is nothing better, in my opinion, than brioche french toast. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. True. I never thought about it. I always think of challah french toast but brioche would be even richer! :)

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  17. Have never baled a challah nor a Brioche...but its high time I take inspiration from you. Lovely clicks, Sylvie.

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    1. TY Sanjeeta. Let me know how it turns out. Shulie :)

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  18. I'm very good at eating brioche, but haven't tried making them yet, so thanks for the guidance.

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    1. I was too until now and you get the hang of making brioche very easily. Let me know when you make it.:)

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  19. Brioche - the term is very new to me. I have tasted something similar to this but didn't know the name until now. I like the use of chalk board as a prop. It makes your dish look so good. Thanks for sharing the recipe Shulie.

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  20. I was planning on making a brioche this weekend. Yours look so pretty.
    thanks for the lovely video links you shared, very helpful

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  21. Your photos are making me want to get up and make brioche right now. Looks so good! I made some challah last week - half of it is in my belly, the other half is in the freezer...now I wish that it was brioche that was sitting in there, instead.

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  22. Gorgeous photography, Shulie. The chalkboard and cute molds give the bread a classic bistro feel to it! I can't envision a more perfect brioche than yours here. Brava!

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