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Does sourdough make enriched sweet breads better?

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Andreea C's picture
Andreea C

Does sourdough make enriched sweet breads better?

Hello to everybody. I want to share with you some pictures of these Romanian little sweet breads we make for the 9th of March. The dough is brioche like, but maybe sweeter, the same dough we use to make the traditional "cozonaci" (similar to panettones maybe), the ritual sweet breads we make for Christmas and Eastern.

Well, these little breads I was telling you about are called "mucenici". They are usually shaped in the form of an "8" or a double spiral, suggesting the human body. There is an Orthodox Christian holiday ocurring at this date - the celebration of the 40 martyrs of Sevastia, who died in the 4th century for their faith. So the shape of the "mucenici" might suggest their sacrifice. Nonetheless more than probable this holday goes back to the Antiquity and is related to the celebration of the New Year (in the old calendar, around this date the spring equinox was taking place), when some rituals had to be made to positively influence the future crops and the well being of the animals. So these breads might have been symbolic sacrificial offerings. 

The main reason I am posting today though is to ask you about your experience with sourdough enriched dough. I have no experience whatsoever with it and I would be curious about some aspects, mainly if it is worth the trouble. I wonder if using it would result in better keeping qualities or if the taste is any different. Does sourdough make brioches or panettones better?

Thank you and have a lovely week!

Comments

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

and the acid helps to strengthen the gluten strands making for a a more open and light crumb.  Quite a difference both ways.

Andreea C's picture
Andreea C

Then I really must try this out.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

HI Andreea,

One to the people here makes Panetonne with sourdough.  He has written about using sourdough in this type of enriched dough in quite a few of his blogs.  THIS link is to one of his blogs and it may help you understand how the use of WY changes the final outcome of your loaf.

I would love to see the formula you use on these rolls. I am always looking for new holiday recipes to try out :)

 I really liked the history of your bread that you included here.

Take Care,

Janet

Andreea C's picture
Andreea C

Hi Janet! Thanks for the link. I will check these articles out. 

Meanwhile, till I manage to write to write this recipe in English, you could maybe google translate the formula I wrote down in my Romanian blog. Here is the link. I adapted my recipe from here. These ”mucenici” are really great. The dough is sweet, light and buttery. 

I am considering adapting this formula to sourdough, since this holiday is coming near. So probably I will start making experiments this week. 

All best!

 

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi Andreea,

Thanks for the links.  The bread you made with the nut filling looks great and I know just who to bake it for too so I am adding it to my 'to bake' list :)

Take Care,

Janet

Andreea C's picture
Andreea C

Great Janet! :) I am happy you're gonna try this Romanian traditional bread. 

jkandell's picture
jkandell

I've made panettone with yeast and I've made it just with sourdough (a wrapped sourdough biga).  I prefer the latter.  Just as with other breads, sourdough shows itself best where flavors are very subtle.  Panettone is just such a bread, since there's usually not many gimmicks in the dough itself (though there are a host of bits like dried fruit ensconced in the dough).  The sourdough has more flavor, without distracting yeast taste.

I used a recipe by the Simili Sisters for sourdough panettone, and it was great.  Surprisingly it rose really high!

(Here's a https://plus.google.com/+JonathanKandell/photos/photo/5152507333260789426?pid=5152507333260789426&oid=111623859325858092403

 

 I had to use google translate, but it was very detailed. I can send you the recipe if you like.  It is similar to the recipe here, but that one uses a tad of yeast too I believe.

With challah I haven't noticed as much difference in flavor, so continue to make yeasted.