Five Minute Brioche Rolls

August 13, 2013

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Well, it’s August now, which must mean Summer is going to be winding down soon (please Jesus!). Though I bet there are a fair share of you who are still getting some visitors turning up on their door. It doesn’t really happen too terribly often to us here in swampy, mosquito infested Virginia. But I bet those of you with more desirable locales are enjoying the company of some visiting friends and family. And if folks don’t appear this summer, the holidays aren’t too far around the corner. This recipe for Five Minute Brioche rolls is a godsend when you have folks staying with you for a few days. They will think you truly are some sort of domestic goddess as you appear from the kitchen daily, with not even one hair out-of-place, bearing a different type of freshly baked, delicious roll. Say… Pain au Chocolat rolls for breakfast, a cinnamon sugar bread loaf for afternoon tea and then savoury little pesto rolls for dinner. Now I suppose you could muss up the hair a bit and artfully dust yourself with flour if you wanted to go down the more dramatic path. But it would be all for show, because this recipe is sooo easy and you will be able to make all three of these breads, or rolls with whatever flavour combinations you fancy, by simply spending five minutes to mix the dough up at the onset of your friends stay.

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That is the beauty of this bread! You just mix up the dough, which really does take only about 5 minutes. Let it rise for a couple of hours and then pop it into the fridge for at least two hours. It will keep in the fridge for up to five days. When you are ready to bake a batch of something delicious, you simply scoop out 1/3 of the dough, roll it out in a rectangle, add whatever type of add-ins you prefer (That’s right! This recipe is totally customizable.), roll it up like you would a cinnamon roll and then slice it into 12 portions which you bake in a muffin tin, or bread loaf pan if you wish. Ta Da! It is that easy. I made Pesto Swirl Muffins one day,

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followed by Pain au Chocolate Muffins the next,

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and then did a Cinnamon Sugar Swirl loaf on the third.

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I first saw this brilliant recipe on The Café Sucré Farina‘s blog. (Fantastic site – you must take a peek!) Apparently there is actually a book (and website) called Artisan Bread in Five Minutes which has recipes for all different types of bread which can be made using this technique. Fascinating huh? I used to be very intimidated by yeast breads. But luckily I got over that, which is a good thing because yeast breads are just so delicious. And this Five Minute Technique shows you how easy making drool-worthy homemade bread can be. I was tempted to mix up another batch at the start of this week, but in the not too distant future I will be heading out on a beach vacation and eating batch upon batch of rich, buttery Brioche is not a good idea when one needs to be sporting a bikini. For those of you who know me well, I’m sure you’ve read that sentence over several times now and are concerned with how far the mercury has plummeted in Hell. Believe me, I agree it is a bit odd. I will have to let you know if I actually spontaneously combust at the moment my pale, pasty foot hits the sand. Wish me luck and effective sun screen coverage while eating a few of these Brioche rolls.

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Five Minute Brioche Rolls

recipe adapted from: The Café Sucré Farina

yield: 12 Muffins per each 1/3 of dough

Ingredients:

For the Brioche:

  • 1 ½ cups lukewarm water
  • 1 tablespoon granulated yeast
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 8 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup honey
  • 1 ½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • 7 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour

Ingredients for the Pesto Swirled Rolls:

  • ⅓ of the brioche dough
  • ¼ cup pesto, purchased or homemade
  • 1 large egg, mixed with 1 tablespoon of water for egg wash

Ingredients for the Pain Au Chocolat Rolls:

  • 1/3 of the brioche dough
  • 1 cup roughly chopped chocolate
  • 1 large egg, mixed with 1 tablespoon of water for egg wash

Ingredients for the Cinnamon Swirl Loaf:

  • 1/3 of the brioche dough
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter

Directions:

Mix the yeast, salt, eggs, honey and melted butter with the water in a 5-quart bowl, or lidded (not airtight) food container. I used this dough rising bucket that I purchased from King Arthur Flour and it works perfectly! Mix in the flour, using a spoon until all of the flour is incorporated.Cover (not airtight), and allow to sit at room temperature for about two hours. Refrigerate for a least two hours before proceeding with recipe.
Instructions for the Pesto Rolls:
Generously butter a 12 cup muffin pan.Scoop up approximately ⅓ of dough and place on a well-floured work surface. Turn dough several times till coated with flour on all sides. Roll dough into a 10×18 inch rectangle. Spread evenly with pesto to within 1/2-inch of edges.Beginning on one long side, roll the dough into a log and pinch edge to seal. Turn dough so that seam is faced down.Cut log into 12 portions, approximately 1-½ inches each. Place in prepared muffin cups with a swirled sides up and down. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and allow to rise for 40-60 minutes or until doubled in size. When almost doubled, preheat oven to 350˚F.Brush rolls with egg wash and place in oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Check rolls after 15 minutes. If they’re getting too brown, cover with foil and bake for 5 more minutes to ensure that center will not be doughy.Remove from oven and allow to cool for 1-2 minutes, then carefully transfer to cooling rack. When completely cool. transfer to an airtight container. May be frozen. Thaw and re-warm in a 325˚F oven for 5-8 minutes right before serving.Instructions for the Pain Au Chocolat Rolls:Follow the above instructions, but replace pesto with 1 cup of roughly chopped chocolate. I used dark chocolate and was quite pleased, but use whatever type you prefer.Instructions for the Cinnamon Swirl Brioche Loaf:

Generously butter a 5X9″ bread pan.

Whisk cinnamon into granulated sugar. Set aside.

Melt butter.

Scoop up approximately ⅓ of dough and place on a well-floured work surface. Turn dough several times till coated with flour on all sides. Roll dough into a 5X8″ rectangle.

Brush the surface of the dough lightly with melted butter. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the buttered dough, leaving a 1/4″ border.

Beginning with the 5″ side of the dough, roll up the entire length of dough and pinch seam closed. Gently rock the roll back and forth to even it out.

Place roll of dough in greased bread pan, seam side down.

Beginning on one long side, roll the dough into a log and pinch edge to seal. Turn dough so that seam is faced down.

Cover with a clean kitchen towel and allow to rise for 40-60 minutes or until doubled in size. When almost doubled, preheat oven to 350˚F.

Gently brush top of loaf with melted butter and sprinkle with remaining cinnamon sugar mix. Bake for 30 -35 minutes or until golden brown. If it is getting too brown, cover with foil.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for 1-2 minutes, then carefully transfer to cooling rack.

Enjoy!


Cinnamon Sugar Dusted Bubble Top Brioche

April 19, 2012

I am somewhat shocked, yet quite pleased to announce that I have somehow acquired magical abilities. I don’t know how or when it happened, I have always been a bit of a muggle (non-magical folk for you who are not familiar with Harry Potter – where have you been?!). However, it has become apparent to me that I do have a bit of the old sorceress inside me. But let me explain, just the other day I decided to attempt to make brioche at home. I LOVE brioche, but had always purchased it from bakeries, never dreaming I could conjure up such buttery, flaky bliss on my own, yet willing to try. So following a Dorie Greenspan (definite culinary enchantress) recipe, I got straight to work.

I was suspicious that something fantastical was happening in my oven the day after I started the brioche making process. (There is an overnight proofing required.) The aroma wafting throughout the house of the that brioche baking was nothing short of intoxicating. Then came the moment when I dared to open my oven door for a peek. My Bubble Top Brioches had risen like champs and were a gorgeous, enticing golden brown. It was then that I knew that I had come fully into my powers. Indeed, I could have stopped right there. Those rich, buttery little brioches would have been delicious all on their own and nothing short of enchanting when slathered with even more butter and jam. But no, something told me that I needed to coat the tops of these delights in a crunchy cinnamon sugar. What can I say…simply magical!

All that Harry Potter-ish talk aside, it really was not difficult to make brioche at home. There is quite a lot of proofing time, so you should plan to start the process the day before you wish to entrance folks with your baking wizardry. (I just can’t let it go…) However as we know, good things come to those who wait and let me tell you, fresh brioche, right out of the oven, is worth every second spent and then some. I chose to make individual serving bubble tops brioches from my dough, however you could divide the dough in half and bake it in two 7 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ pans for 30 minutes. Although the crunchy, sweet cinnamon sugar dusting on my breakfast brioches is completely charming, you could simply brush your brioche with the traditional egg wash. It is very versatile bread and can be used as a vehicle for many toppings such as smoked salmon etc. And once it is stale (as if it will be around long enough to go stale…) it makes a glorious French Toast. My Cinnamon Sugar Dusted Bubble Top Brioches were mesmerizing and have certainly cast a spell over my husband. Bewtich your family today!

Cinnamon Sugar Dusted Bubble Top Brioche

recipe slightly adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table

yield: 12 brioches

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 Cup warm-to-the-touch whole milk
  • 1/4 Cup warm-to-the-touch water
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2 3/4 Cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 12 Tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the topping:

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Directions:

Pour the warm milk and water into the bowl of a stand mixer, add a pinch of the sugar, and sprinkle over the yeast. In another bowl, mix the flour and salt together.

When all the yeast has absorbed some liquid, stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until you have a creamy mixture. Fit the mixer with the dough hook, add all of the flour mixture at once, and turn the mixer on and off in a few short pulses to dampen the flour. Set the mixer to medium-low speed and mix for a minute or two, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed, until you have a shaggy, fairly dry mass. At this point, what you’ve got won’t look like a dough at all – in fact, it will be pretty ugly, but that doesn’t matter.

Scrape down the bowl, turn the mixer to low and add the beaten eggs one third at a time, beating until each addition is incorporated before adding the next. Beat in the remaining sugar increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for about 3 minutes, until the dough starts to come together.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the butter in 2 tablespoon chunks. Beat for about 30 seconds, or until each piece of butter  is on its way to being almost incorporated, before adding the next little chunk of butter. When all the butter is in, you’ll have a dough that is very soft, really almost like a batter. Increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and climbs up the hook, about 10 minutes, or a little longer.

Transfer the dough to a lightly buttered bowl, cover with plastic wrap and leave it at room temperature until it’s nearly doubled in size; it will take at least 1 hour, but maybe longer, depending on the warmth of your room.

Deflate the dough by lifting it up around the edges and letting it fall with a slap. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator until it stops rising as energetically, about 2 hours: “slap” it down every 30 minutes.

Press the plastic against the surface of the dough and leave it in the refrigerator to chill overnight.

The next morning, butter a 12-cup muffin tin.

Divide the chilled dough into 12 portions. Cut each portion into 3 even pieces, and roll the pieces into balls. The dough is soft and sticky, so here’s the easiest way to shape them: Put a little flour on the counter and put some flour on your palms. Put a piece of dough on the counter, cup a hand over it, and droll the dough around under you cupped palm until you’ve got a nice ball. Using 3 pieces for each brioche, put the balls, prettiest sides up, in the muffin cups.

Place a piece of wax paper on top of the brioches and put the pan in a warm place. Let the brioches rise until they almost fill the cups, 1- 2 hours, depending on the warmth of the room.

Just before the dough is fully risen, center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 ° F.

When the brioches have risen, remove the paper and put the muffin tin on a baking sheet. Bake the brioches for 20 -23 minutes, or until they are well risen and deeply golden. If you think they are browning too quickly, you can cover them with a foil tent. Transfer the muffin tin to a cooling rack and let the brioches rest for 5 – 10 minutes before lifting them out of the molds and onto the cooling rack.

While brioches are cooling, in a small, shallow bowl mix the 2/3 cup sugar and 1 Tablespoon cinnamon together. In another small, shallow bowl melt 3 Tablespoons butter. Holding the bottom of a brioche dip the top first in the melted butter, making sure to coat it entirely. Then dip the buttered top into the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Shake the excess cinnamon sugar from the brioche and place it back on the cooling rack. Repeat with the remaining brioches.

Enjoy!


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