Thursday, 27 February 2014

Daring Bakers - February 2014!

This month our host was Sawsan, who is blogging over at Chef in Disguise!

She chose a lovely topic: Sweet Breads! And not just a plain bread... A braided bread, like art!
So challenging and oh, so fun! I liked the process very much!

Out of the two recipes, I chose the one for the chocolate filling, although slightly adapted.

Sweet Bread
adapted to my pantry!!!

300 gr evaporated milk
150 gr icing sugar
2 eggs
200 ml olive oil
250 ml warm water
13 gr dry active yeast
1 kg all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt

dough wash:
25 gr milk powder
45 ml warm water
15 gr icing sugar

100 gr sugar
50 gr melted butter
6 tbsp chocolate malted milk powder

* Preheat the oven to 240oC.
* Mix the milk, sugar, yeast, water and eggs in the mixer with the paddle attachment.
* Start adding the flour, one cup at a time.
* After the first 2 or 3 cups, switch to the dough hook and keep adding the flour.
* The dough will be rather sticky, but that's OK.
* Place the dough in an oiled bowl, form a ball and let it rest, until it doubles in size, in a warm place.
* Punch it down and divide it two parts. Put one back in the bowl and work with the other.
* Divide the dough in 4 parts and roll them in disks about 25 cm in diameter.
* Cut a piece of parchment paper, bigger than the disks.
* Place the first disk on the paper, brush with some butter and spread sugar and malted milk.
* Repeat for all the layers and finish with some butter on top of the last.
* Now for the tricky part: Braiding!

For this, I used the given design. I cut the dough and twisted the pieces.

TIP: Do you see this light blue fabric under my bowl? Well, it is my electrical heated mini blanket, which I use for sore muscles. I turned it on, placed my bowl on top and let it do its magic. It works miracles for yeasted dough!!!

* Mix all the dough wash ingredients and brush some on the bread.
* Let it rest for 15 min.
* Carefully take the bread with the parchment paper under it and place it on a baking tray.
* Bake for 5 min. on 240oC, then reduce the temp to 200oC and bake for 25 min.

While bread Nr 1 is baking, start working on that second dough piece.
* Punch it down, if it has risen again (mine did).
* Repeat the process. For this I chose a filling of my homemade apple thyme jam.
* Apart from the dough wash, I sprinkled some cinnamon on top as well!

I cut the lines as shown with a sharp knife. For the outer lines I twisted the dough "inside out". For the middle lines, I cut small lines starting from the middle of them and twisted the pieces (not shown, sorry...)

We loved them!G. loved the apple one and I devoured the chocolate one.

Fresh from the oven:

The first design is a lot more clear, because of the antithesis of the chocolate.

To clarify:
-I didn't use sweetened condensed milk, because I forgot to buy it and I simply couldn't go out to the store again.
-I used 2 eggs, not 3, because I always do that, reduce the eggs in a recipe by one.
-For the filling, I simply didn't use nutella in order to reduce the calories.

Next time I will make this recipe EXACTLY like it says. Even pour sweetened milk on top after it comes out of the oven. I must be so good!

As for the braiding, I enjoyed it so much, as it was the first time I did it!!!

Seriously, a very fun challenge! Thank you Sawsan!



pizzarossa said...

They both look great Louise! I love the twisting on the second one!

Anonymous said...

Hello Louise
Thank you so much for taking on this challenge with me :)
I second Pizzarossa, both creations look great and I really love the pattern of the second one

Anonymous said...

Love the creativity in your second bread! And great tip about using an electric blanket to help the dough rise - gotta remember that one!

What's for dessert? said...

They both look beautiful!
I'm curious, why do you reduce the eggs in a recipe by one?

Louise said...

When I make a recipe that doesn't have strong flavor extracts, i.e. spices, or that isn't chocolate, then I reduce the eggs, so that I will not risk getting that smell of "egginess", which is so unappetizing to me! Sometimes I even use extra extracts or liqueur, in order to cover the eggs! Too weird? I don't know... I loooove eggs, just not their smell!