Brioche to me is one of those luxuries best saved for when you’re in France on holiday and want a freshly baked breakfast treat, or less romantically, the little sweet individually packed rolls that are perfect car fodder for the kids to keep them quiet on long journeys.
Have I ever made my own? I did on a course at Leiths back in the mists of time. It was a very sticky affair, as we did it by hand, so while the results were delicious, I never bothered trying again.
However I recently joined my blogging buddies Helen of Fuss Free Flavours and Michelle of Utterley Scrummy for a day out of Brioche making with Brioche Pasquier in Greenwich. They’ve been making brioche treats since 1936 when they started their family bakery in France, so we had high hopes of learning a thing or two.
We were given a rather easy recipe to follow and were armed with Kmixers and there were experts on hands to guide us in our pursuits.
We had a lot of fun rolling our little balls of brioche dough and the results were super tasty. We brought our baked goodies home with us, so the smell of fresh brioche wafted with us all the way.
If you fancy trying to make these cute little brioche rolls at home, then here’s the recipe kindly given by Brioche Pasquier. I reckon they’ll make lovely breakfast treats if you’ve got guests staying over at Christmas.
Briochettes – Recipe from Brioche Pasquir
500g strong flour
120g caster sugar
40g fresh yeast
125g unsalted butter
For the glaze
1 egg and milk beaten together
1. Line two baking sheets with greaseproof paper. Put the flour in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the salt and half the sugar to one side of the bowl and the yeast to the other.
2. Add the water, eggs and butter and mix on a slow speed for 2 minutes, then on a medium speed for 5 minutes.
3. Add the rest of the sugar and continue to mix on a medium/high speed for a further 4 minutes. The dough should be soft, shiny and elastic. If it isn’t then just keep going for a few more minutes and keep checking it.
4. Divide the dough into equal pieces of about 50g. Shape each into a smooth ball by rolling it in your hands to get the basic shape, then rolling it on a work surface, forming your hand into a cup shape over the ball to get it perfectly round. Place them on the prepared baking sheets.
5. Very lightly brush the dough with water to avoid it drying out. Leave to rise in a warm place for around 1 hour 30 minutes.
6. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Brush the brioche with the egg wash and sprinkle some pearl sugar on top.
7. Bake for 10 minutes. Leave to cool before serving.
Feeding Boys Festive Tip: Work some orange zest and dried cranberries into the dough before proving for a lovely Christmas touch
Things to remember…
- To avoid the texture being too dense, make sure you wait for the dough to become glossy when kneading. You’ll know it’s ready when you do the window pane test. Pull a section of the dough really thin and if it doesn’t break and you can see light through it, that generally means it’s ready to prove.
- Make sure you leave it long enough when proving – you want it to double in size.
- If you want to add chocolate chips, add 80g of chips per 500g of dough. Knead them in once the dough is ready to prove.
Disclosure: Thanks to Brioche Pasquier for hosting this fun day out. We had the cost of our travel covered and were each given a hamper of Brioche Pasquier products to take home.