Friday, October 22, 2010

Cookbook challenge, week 48: Brioche

I am so far behind in the cookbook challenge that it's not funny! Things have been a bit too busy to do a lot of new cooking lately, and so I've been sticking to old and familiar recipes. Never mind, I will catch up on the challenges eventually.

The theme for week 48 was bread. I've tried cooking various breads semi-regularly, but without much success in yeast breads (flatbreads, Indian breads are easier!). My plan is to do an Adult Education breadmaking class sometime to try and figure out where I am going wrong - maybe not letting it rise for long enough or not kneading well enough - the new Kitchenaid helps with the kneading part, at least!

I decided to make a fruit brioche for the challenge, and used a recipe from Stephanie Alexander's The Cook's Companion.

250g plain flour
pinch of salt
1 tsp instant dried yeast
1/2 cup milk
1 tbs sugar
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
75g softened butter
75g dried fruit (I used raisins and cranberries)
1 tbs brandy

Warm milk and sugar slightly, stirring, until sugar has dissolved, then allow to cool a little.
Mix brandy and fruit and set aside.
Mix flour, salt and yeast in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook.
Combine egg yolks and warm milk.
Make a well in the flour, then pour in liquid and mix to a dough.
Work until dough forms a smooth ball, about 10 minutes.
Continue beating while adding butter in two lots, until the dough is smooth and shiny (add a little more flour or milk if not right).
Cover bowl with a clean cloth and leave dough to double in size for about 2 hours.
Knock back dough and briefly knead in the fruit mixture.
Shape into a loaf and allow to rise for another hour.
Bake at 180ÂșC for 30 minutes, then tip out of the tin onto a baking tray and bake for a further ten minutes.
Cool before eating.

It's nice. Not amazing, but nice.


1 comment:

  1. It looks really yummy, I love the idea of a buttery Brioche, so much nicer than a plain loaf of bread. I had a thought on why breadmaking may not have gone so well for you. Tasmania is cold! I make bread almost every week and even on cooler days here in balmy Coffs Harbour my bread making suffers when the ambient temperature drops. I have found that unless the room is very warm the yeast doesn't do as effecive a job. Hope this helps. In summary, its probably not your fault.