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Okay folks I need Brioche help

First, let me say that I have never had good experience with baking. So I am in need of serious help.

I want to use this for french toast so I am looking for a good recipe that I can make in loaf form. I can never get my baked goods to rise so tips on that would help as well. I have a few weeks until I need to be ready to go but I want to be practicing in the meantime.

TIA!

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  1. This is my favorite recipe. I can practically make this blindfolded and have been making it every weekend since I tried it. You'll get soft but firm texture texture (great for french toast) and tremendous rise; I prefer ap flour to bread flour and only keep the salt to 1/2 teaspoon (not 1 tsp as previously posted):

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7849...

    22 Replies
    1. re: lilgi

      What size is the loaf pan you use?

      1. re: dawminator

        I use a 9x5-inch loaf pan but I've also made this one with traditional brioche molds.

      2. re: lilgi

        Ok let me tell you how miserably I failed on this recipe and hopefully you can provide some guidance. I followed the recipe through all the steps. I put warm milk (about 100 degrees) over 2 teaspoons active dry yeast and let it sit for five minutes. It was kind of lumpy but I poured it into the mixer bowl with the help of a spoon. Next, I added one egg and 1/2 cup of flour and mixed those together. Then I covered it with a layer of flour (1/2 cup). I let it sit for 40 minutes in my apartment which is set at 75 degrees. After that (and i noticed there were cracks throughout) I attached the dough hook and began incorporating the rest of the flour. My dough hook didn't do much good however. Pretty much all it did was push all of the flour to the side of the bowl. I tried using a spoon to push it down but the mixture was too dry. In no way did it ever form anything resembling dough. It just looked like lumpy flour. Did I miss a step? Was there more liquid somewhere that was inadvertantly left from the recipe? I appreciate the help!

        1. re: dawminator

          To begin with, did the yeast in the milk bubble or just stay lumpy? If the latter, the problem is with the yeast.

            1. re: dawminator

              How old is your yeast? It might be time to buy more. You can test it but it should start bubbling, lumpy is okay but you want some bubbles. Here is a good pic (and directions on testing):

              http://faithfulprovisions.com/2010/09...

              This might be the reason your baked goods aren't rising.

              1. re: chowser

                He wrote that the dough cracked which is what is supposed to happen if the yeast is working properly when you make the sponge, so I didn't think there was anything wrong with the yeast.

                1. re: lilgi

                  Thanks--I missed that. I immediately latched onto the part about the yeast mixture being lumpy and not bubbly. I'd be a terrible detective.

                  1. re: chowser

                    Too funny, I think the same about myself ;)

                    1. re: lilgi

                      First, let me just say that I love this website.

                      Second, I made my brioche again today and it turned out amazing! This is the first time I have ever gotten anything I have baked to turn out and it was very fulfilling. The crust was golden brown and the inside had a perfect texture and taste. I can't wait to use my egg was and make this into french toast!

                      Thanks to all of you for helping me out and giving me some much needed baking confidence!

                      1. re: dawminator

                        I'm so glad that you're happy with it! You can caramelize a few slices with sugar and butter in a skillet for a really quick breakfast which is what I do sometimes when I'm rushed to get the boys to school; they really love it this way when I'm not making a custard. Thanks so much for letting us know how it turned out.

                        1. re: lilgi

                          "You can caramelize a few slices with sugar and butter in a skillet for a really quick breakfast"

                          That sounds great, especially as a way to use the bread when it's a day or two old. I've used to dough to make cinnamon/pecan rolls which are great for breakfast but simple toast like that would be delicious.

                2. re: chowser

                  I bought it this week actually so I dont think that is it

            2. re: dawminator

              Dawminator, the other two eggs were missing from that step, that's why the dough was too dry.
              Apologies for the typo, I often have to paraphrase and the last egg is used to glaze the dough before you bake.

              1. re: lilgi

                So when do I add the other two eggs?

                1. re: dawminator

                  The eggs go in with the rest of the dry ingredients before you add the butter. You knead the dough with the hook for about 15 minutes before incorporating the butter a little at a time, then beat with the dough hook on high for another five minutes. Let me know how it turns out for you.

                  1. re: dawminator

                    I knew I had that recipe on there twice and I looked at the first one - missing the 2 eggs in that step there too. Thanks so much for pointing that out, I'll make sure I correct it.

              2. re: lilgi

                Any thoughts on this recipe for brioche hamburger buns as to whether it sounds tasty/reputable or not?

                http://www.portuguesegirlcooks.com/20...

                Thanks, 'hounds!

                1. re: Tehama

                  I don't think a dough that uses melted butter can be consider a brioche. That does not mean it isn't tasty of course, but a brioche has butter whipped into the dough bit by bit creating that recognizable texture.

                  1. re: Tehama

                    It would work but that's a lot of yeast to force a quick rise which means the result will suffer in texture/taste. I've never used melted butter, as smtucker said, but that's also not much butter/eggs for that amount of flour for a brioche. All that said, I think enriched breads are forgiving and even one that's not optimal is better than what you could buy outside of a good bakery.

                    1. re: Tehama

                      As usual, you guys are spot on. I went ahead and made the recipe because I needed hamburger buns, and the recipe is most definitely *not* brioche. However, it seems to be on point for what I needed (hamburger buns). It is fairly dense, but the flavor is good. I've actually never made a proper brioche before; that is next on my to-do list!

                      Thanks, guys!

                      1. re: Tehama

                        Wow. Bread in three hours... that was a lot of yeast! But as you say, you needed hamburger buns, and now you have some!

                  2. Someone recently posted this recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: http://www.artisanbreadinfive.com/200...

                    I haven't tried it, but it certainly looks simple/foolproof if nothing else. The recipe lilgi posted sounds great too - that's next on my "to try" list!

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: biondanonima

                      I like that recipe--it's not quite a rich as a brioche but it works well for how easy it is. I think it would be great as french toast. Brioche is easy w/ a heavy duty stand mixer but I can't imagine doing it by hand, especially for someone who's not accustomed to a lot of kneading.

                      1. re: biondanonima

                        I don't doubt you'll love Claudia's when you try it, and it comes out great every time. Just be ready to have the KA beating for a good 10 to 15 minutes. I haven't tried kneading it for less time to see if I get the same results; I rarely fool around with this one. Let me know how it goes for you.

                        1. re: lilgi

                          Will do. I have a KA and I'm not afraid to use it!

                      2. Do you own a stand mixer or are you planning to knead by hand?

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: smtucker

                          That's a key question. And, how powerful is the stand mixer? I've had brioche dough tax my Kitchenaid pro. I wouldn't try it on something less.

                          1. re: smtucker

                            I am maybe the one out of 10,000,000 26 year old men who owns his own Kitchen Aide.

                            1. re: dawminator

                              Aha. So then I would highly recommend Joanne Chang's recipe from "Flour." There are numerous postings with this recipe online [search for sticky buns and brioche separately.] The book has three versions with different amounts of richness. If you prefer to have a book in front of you with all of her tips, I bet your library has a copy. Good luck!

                          2. How about trying Jean Louis Palladin's brioche (listed in all of TK's books)?