How To Make Party Brioche to a French Recipe
Traditional French Bread
Hello and welcome once again to my kitchen.
A lady friend of mine called Elaine has a holiday home in France and whenever she goes by car and ferry of course she kindly brings me various flour milled in France. She brings a fantastic multi grain flour, but the favourite one is a flour specifically for making brioche. When baked it has more of a cake consistency rather than bread. Absolutely delicious and there are many different ways to cook it and lots of different additives by that I mean fruit cheese, herbs and spices.
Fabio is here as usual, cluttering up my kitchen and complaining about the latest female in his life. This one expects him to take her out to the theatre and for meals in posh restaurants, whereas Fabio is quite content to sit at my kitchen table drinking a few of my beers and bake or cook something for us to eat.
So no surprise then that this recipe is all about brioche, I realise that some of you will not be able to get authentic brioche flour, but if you use half bread flour and half all-purpose or plain flour you will get a similar effect.
My friend who brings the flour asked the lady in the little shop where she buys it for a traditional recipe, and here it is.
- 500 gms Flour, part bread part all purpose
- 200ml warm milk, you can use part buttermilk
- 3 eggs, medium sized
- pinch salt
- teaspoon caster sugar
- 1 cup raisins, soaked overnight in brandy
- 1 packet dried yeast
- 2 tablespoons Butter
Mix the Flour to Form the Dough
- In a mixing bowl add the flour, if using two sorts mix them together.
- warm the milk to 90 F and add to the flour. place butter in a small dish and melt it over a steaming pan. place the eggs into a cup to check them before putting in a bowl. lightly mix them but don't whisk. Then add to flour.
- Follow the instructions for your yeast, usually empty one satchet into the flour.
- Now begin to knead it into a soft dough, add butter, salt and fruit. knead it for ten minutes and then leave it to rise.
You can see from the photograph above, why it is called 'party brioche' it splits up very easily and everyone can tear off a chunk for themselves. There is a German-Swiss bread called 'Partybrot' that is very similar.
It is very similar to making any bread, but this time of course we are using milk and eggs in the mixture. This gives it a much richer taste, I also add quite a lot of butter, which helps with the keeping qualities of the bread and will give your brioche a longer shelf life.
I'm using dried yeast in this recipe because I realise that it is also difficult for some people to get fresh yeast; if you have problems finding fresh yeast just ask a small bakers near you or in fact I have found that some supermarkets that have instore bakeries will let you have some yeast.
Once the bread has risen to about double its original size you need to do what is known as knocking it back, in other words you knock the gas out of the dough.
Cut the dough in half and on a floured surface roll it out. Now roll it up like a Swiss roll, you will need to work fairly quickly because the dough will begin to rise again. With a sharp blade cut your role into sections and then turn them on to their end and put them into a baking dish. You can see that I used a spring dish with a lock for one of the loaves and the other I placed into a bundt tin.
You can use an egg wash to give it a nice shiny finish.
Pre heat your oven to GM5 - 190F
cook for about 25 minutes but keep your eye on it because of the egg topping which can burn.
make the bread exactly the same as for the party brioche but without the currents. Try adding spices such as cinnamon, Mace, nutmeg, or my favourite you can add two or 3 teaspoons of allspice. I also add candied peal, dates, and various varieties of nuts such as walnuts, pecan nuts and again my favourite pistachio nuts.
There is no end to the possibilities and the grandkids love it when I add chocolate chips and juicy yellow sultanas into the mix. I have no doubt that you will have your own favourite so give it a try using this basic recipe.
You can of course simply make the recipe up without any additives. This is my wife's favourite for breakfast she simply spreads it with butter and perhaps some of our home made jam.
I think nothing goes better with this bread than fresh chilled milk.You might prefer something stronger, so I would go for a pudding or dessert wine, try a German Auslese.
A nice cup of Assam would hit the spot too, not a mixed blend of tea as these tend to use Kenyon and Darjeeling which are high in tannin and have a dryer taste.
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