Saturday, 19 January 2013

Brioche pure and simple

The type of brioches I've made before: Belgian Brioche were not the classic ones...even so they were really good.  I made those by hand.  Now that I have a mixer with a dough hook, I thought I would make my first bread with the mixer, with a recipe that says: 'Use a mixer'.

Yesterday being Friday, my usual bun day, I made 'brioche buns', as well as some cup cakes.

It was fun to have a call from Vicki who kindly gave me her machine, in the middle of the mixing.  I still feel as if it is hers....Sounds like she is exploring some interesting food avenues, and not allowing her recently diagnosed diabetes to curtail her love of cooking.

From How to Bake, by Paul Hollywood, I chose the Brioche Recipe.  It makes a large loaf in a tin, which would be lovely for a house party, or when large numbers are sitting down to breakfast.  I used the dough to make 12 x 100g buns to fit my brioche tins.  One of these large buns is quite sufficient for breakfast, and the rest freeze very well.

I used the instant yeast as given in the recipe, but I think next time I will use fresh yeast dissolved in the sugar and warm milk.

The recipe gives 5 medium eggs, and it got me wondering just what 5 eggs should weigh....and thanks to the Internet, I arrived at the ideal for whole egg, white, and yolk.  After all if one measures the liquid and other ingredients accurately, then one ought to know the weight of the eggs.  I mostly buy my eggs in a mixed bunch, so my fifth egg had to be the very smallest.

Delamere Goat's butter states the salt content as 1%, so with 250g butter, I reduced the salt from the 7g given in the recipe to 4g, to compensate for the given 250g unsalted butter required.  It took some time to incorporate the butter, so I would make sure next time the butter is at least as soft as the dough mixture...but then yesterday was really cold, with thick snow falling.  I left the bowl of dough to rise during the day in the conservatory which was at least as cold as the fridge.  With several egg yolks in the fridge, instead of the whole egg wash, I used egg mixed with a little cream to glaze.  No glaze is given in the recipe.  The buns were baked late evening.  I baked them for 10 minutes at Gas Mark 6, then reduced the temperature to Gas Mark 4 for 15, swapping the trays in between.

This morning, we sat down to breakfast in the heated conservatory, looking over the garden covered in about 10cm of snow, with a warmed brioche each and a selection of preserves....Having made them and knowing of the amount of eggs and butter, in them, no added was butter put on the table.

Mr S asked is there anything in these?  I said no apricots, chocolate or grated oranges....just a little added vanilla, (not in the recipe), and we agreed, next time, 1 full tsp vanilla bean.  Otherwise even Marie Antoinette would have made sure she had one!

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