Step-by-Step Guide to Baking Brioche
So, you love brioche? Well, honestly, who doesn’t? It’s buttery and flaky and is the perfect treat for any time of the day. Strangely, brioche is believed to be a lot harder to make than it really is. All you actually need is a stand mixer, a lot of butter and a little patience. We run through the steps of baking brioche in this easy-to-follow recipe.
Baking Brioche – The Ingredients You Need
First things first, get all of your ingredients weighed out and make sure your butter is at a cool but workable texture. You don’t want it to be melty, but not completely rock hard.
Your milk and water mix will also need to be warmed up slightly, so pop it in the microwave for a little bit but ensure that it doesn’t boil!
Start with Yeast
Now, let’s get started. The first thing you’re going to do is mix together 2 tsp (10 ml) dry yeast, 2 Tbsp + 2tsp (40 ml) water and 2 Tbsp + 2tsp (40 ml) milk in the bowl of a stand mixer. Let the mixture sit for about 5 minutes or so until the yeast becomes bubbly.
Be sure to stop the mixer a few times to scrape the sides of the bowl and pull up any leftover yeast from the bottom of the bowl. Don’t stress if the dough is bitty and a little dry.
Mixing in wet Ingredients
Add 2 eggs and 15 ml yoghurt to the flour mix. Mix gently to combine, then add 4 tsp (20 ml) sugar. Turn the mixer up to medium-low and mix until the dough forms a smooth ball.
Take care to stop and check that all the dry bits at the bottom are being incorporated – you may need to turn the mixer off and get your hands in there.
Adding the butter
Turn the mixer back down to a low speed and mix the butter into the dough a tablespoon at a time, beating until each piece is almost completely incorporated before adding the next piece. Be patient with this step to ensure that the dough is evenly mixed and kneaded. Stop periodically to pull the dough from the hook and scrape the sides of the bowl to ensure even mixing.
Don’t panic if it looks like the bowl is getting very slick with butter, simply stop the mixer and scrape down the sides.
The dough will be very soft. Once all of the butter has been incorporated, continue to knead the dough for at least 10 minutes or until it pulls away from the sides of the bowl and is completely smooth.
Let it rise
Transfer the dough to a clean bowl and let it rise at room temperature (nowhere too hot though!) until it has doubled in size, this can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, so be patient.
Knead the dough in the bowl a few times to release the air, then wrap with clingfilm and pop the bowl in the fridge. Let the dough sit in the fridge overnight. If you wanted to, you can leave in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
Baking Your Brioche
When you are ready to bake, remove the dough from the fridge and weigh it. Divide the weight by 4. Roll each piece into a ball and arrange the dough balls into a greased loaf pan. Cover the loaf pan lightly with a piece of buttered clingfilm and cover with a tea towel. Leave to double in size at room temperature.
Keep an eye on the dough, as if it gets too warm the butter will leach out. This proving process can take up to two hours, so be patient.
Preheat oven to 210 °C. When the dough has doubled, brush it with an egg wash.
Bake the loaf for 25 to 35 minutes, or until deep golden brown. You can check if it’s done by tapping the bottom of the loaf pan, use oven mitts or tea towels so hold the pan though, as it will be very hot.
Let the brioche cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely.
Enjoy with jam, extra butter (we won’t tell anyone!) and a cup of coffee.