Sunday, June 17, 2012

Adventures in Baking- Brioche

So for Father's Day, I told my husband I would bake him some brioche bread for breakfast. I've been on a bread-baking kick since we started feeding Elliott "real" food, and my new recipe book (Artisan Bread in 5 minutes a Day) touts brioche as the most delicious pastry dough. So, what the hell? We're fat already... let's give it a shot.

Initial Impressions:
This dough uses a LOT of fatty ingredients. I made enough for 2 loaves of bread, and I used 3 sticks of butter. 4 eggs. 1/2 cup of honey. Logic would dictate that this bread would be fricking amazing, right?

After mixing all my ingredients, the dough is a lot more like a thick cake batter than a yeasty dough. 2 hours of rise time didn't result in a lot of rise in the dough. Oh well. Into the fridge to chill overnight.

The dough is much easier to work with after chilling. It's like playdough. I quickly shaped it into a loaf and added it to my favorite bread baking pan, which is a cheap ceramic dish we got as a christmas present (I think the real present was the banana bread baked in the dish, but since my banana bread rules the world, all others pale in comparison. I kept the dish and tossed the bread.) Also, not included in the recipe but I did anyway: cinnamon-sugar for the crust.

While the bread was baking, I took a stick of butter in a bowl and put it on top of the oven. Once it softened nicely and I mixed it with some honey to make homemade honey butter. Remember how I said we were already fat? Yeah, this would be why...

So 45 minutes later the house is filled with the smell of freshly-baked bread (one of my most favorite things in the whole world). It's tough to wait for the bread to cool before slicing into it.

My husband and I liked it, but were not super-impressed with it. On a scale of 1-10 (10 being the greatest thing he's ever eaten, which I will be blogging about next... Challah bread...), he gave this one a solid 7. I said 6.5-7.

It's not that it's bad, per say... but it is awfully dense. More like a heavy piece of cake, less like a bread. I think it would make for some delicious donuts (which is actually one of the recipes in the book... might be trying that next). The honey butter is the hero of this dish. I think the bread would have been too dry without it.

So that's all for Father's Day 2012.


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