what put brioche on the brain? not really sure. out of the blue, i found myself envisioning the french toast i would make with it. and i had to have it.
apparently this gourmet bread carries a reputation of being a somewhat demanding operation, but i didn't know that going into it. and you would never know it from the method i used! a little lengthy, yes. difficult, no. and the results were marvelous-- all those eggs pay off in a major way. it's filthy rich, with a hint of sweetness. i loved it from the first bite. certainly a new staple in the splurge category, and on the docket for easter sunday.
recipe faintly adapted and halved from artisan bread in five minutes
procedure adapted from la tartine gourmande
3/4 c. lukewarm water
2 1/4 tsp. yeast (1 pkg.)
2 tsp. salt
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 c. honey
3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) butter, melted
3 and 3/4 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
extra flour for work surface & handling
egg wash for brushing on top
1. mix the yeast, salt, eggs, honey, and melted butter with the water in a large bowl.
2. mix in the flour, using a spoon, until all the flour is incorporated. dough will be very loose and wet.
3. cover and allow to sit at room temp for 2 hours. after 2 hours, transfer to fridge to chill for 30 min. to 1 hour. (keep covered) it's easier to work with after it's been chilled.
4. remove from fridge, and dump dough onto a well-floured surface, working flour into the dough until it's easy to handle, and making 8 equal-sized balls.
5. place 4 dough balls into 2 greased loaf pans or make into traditional style brioche rolls and let rest for 1 hour and 20 min. (i watched this cute li'l video to learn how to shape my rolls.)
7. preheat oven to 400 degrees. brush dough with egg wash, if desired. with a pair of clean scissors, make small cuts at the top of each ball. place pans in oven to bake for 10 minutes, then reduce to 350 degrees and bake for about 20 to 30 minutes.
please eat it hot out of the oven and be sure to make french toast for dinner the next day. yu-hum.
meanwhile, i'm super excited because..
1. i still have half a loaf in the freezer for more amazing french toast.
2. i'm bringing brioche to the harms family easter dinner!
3. and my copy of artisan bread in five minutes a day is in at the library! woohoo.