The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Broa de Milho (Portugese Corn Bread)

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isand66's picture
isand66

Broa de Milho (Portugese Corn Bread)

 

  Back in December, Varda posted a request for an authentic Portuguese bread recipe for Broa.  I did a quick search on the internet myself and came up with a couple of interesting options.  The one I baked the other day was very interesting in regards to how the dough is actually shaped which is what convinced me to give it a try.  After the dough bulk rises you divide and roll the dough around a bowl that has been filled with water and then lightly floured.  It was very simple and fun to try and came out pretty good.  The original recipe was posted here.

The recipe is not very specific in regards to all of the ingredients so I converted everything to grams and converted my starter to an almost 100% hydration one.  I usually like to bulk ferment the dough in the refrigerator but I decided to follow the recipe and let it sit overnight at room temperature which was around 68 degrees.  I think next time I would bulk retard the dough in the refrigerator to get some additional flavor.

This recipe also calls for a corn meal "scald and a multi-grain flour mix.  The original recipe used rye, wheat and barley but I changed it up a bit and used rye, spelt and red winter wheat.

I think the final baked dough came out pretty good with a nice sour tang and you can definitely taste the corn meal influence.  Give this one a try if for nothing more than to try the unique shaping technique.

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Broa de Milho (Portuguese Corn Bread) (%) Broa de Milho (Portuguese Corn Bread) (weights)

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Levain Directions

Mix all the levain ingredients together  for about 1 minute and cover with plastic wrap.  Let it sit at room temperature for around 7-8 hours or until the starter has doubled.  I used my proofer set at 83 degrees and it took about 4 hours.

Corn Scald

Pour 351 grams of boiling water over the 224 grams of fine corn meal and mix to form a mush.  Let it sit and cool for around 20 minutes.

 Main Dough Procedure

Mix the flours and levain with the cooled corn scald for a minute.  Next add the salt and the remainder of the water and mix for around 5-6 minutes until a soft dough has been achieved.  Remove the dough from your bowl and place it in a lightly oiled bowl or work surface and do several stretch and folds.  Let it rest covered for 10-15 minutes and then do another stretch and fold.  Let it rest another 10-15 minutes and do one additional stretch and fold.  Let the dough sit out in your covered bowl overnight for around 10-12 hours.

The next morning you should have a nice puffy dough that has doubled in size.  Carefully transfer the dough to your work surface and divide into 4 equal parts but be careful not to deflate the dough.

Prepare a large mixing bowl by filling it with cold water and pouring it out.  Next dust the inside of the bowl with flour so it is completely covered.

Now for the fun part!  Take the first piece of dough and carefully place it in the floured bowl and swirl it around for around 15 - 20 seconds until it starts to get roundish.  Place it on a parchment covered baking sheet and dust with flour.  Repeat for the other 3 pieces and cover with either a moist lint free towel or sprayed plastic wrap.Let the dough sit at room temperature for around 2 hours.  The dough should puff up and spread out so don't be alarmed.  Do the poke test to make sure you don't over-proof them.shapedandrisen

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Around 45 minutes before ready to bake, pre-heat your oven to 550 degrees F. and prepare it for steam.  I have a heavy-duty baking pan on the bottom rack of my oven with 1 baking stone on above the pan and one on the top shelf.  I pour 1 cup of boiling water in the pan right after I place the dough in the oven.

Right before you are ready to put them in the oven, add 1 cup of boiling water to your steam pan or follow your own steam procedure.

Immediately lower the temperature to 450 degrees.  Bake for 15-20 minutes and then lower the temperature to 400 degrees until the crust is nice and brown and the internal temperature of the bread is 210 degrees.

Take the bread out of the oven when done and let it cool on a bakers rack before for at least 2 hours before eating.

CrumbGroup

Lexi trying to score some flour.....

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Comments

varda's picture
varda

I haven't had a chance to go back to this.   Yours looks very similar to the one I had in the Portuguese restaurant.   What did you eat it with?    Thanks for working this through.   Now I can just follow your instructions.  -Varda

isand66's picture
isand66

You're welcome.  I actually just had it with some cheese and last night I made a Pastrami sandwich.  Probably not a perfect bread for that, but it was a necessary evil.  This would go great with some sliced meat or grilled fish or a nice stew. 

When you get around to making it, let me know how it turns out.

Ian

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

Imagine pastrami on supermarket bread and this becomes a more perfect pairing. 

isand66's picture
isand66

Thank you David.  It may not be as good as pastrami on rye but it wasn't too shabby :).

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

up well.  Pretty amazing for 25% of the mix being non-gluten.  It has to be hearty, healthy and tasty.  Next time Lucy need cornbread to sop something up like chili or just eat with butter and honey - this will be it - or something like it.  Very nice baking indeed, 

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks DA.  This was a fun one to make and came out very tasty.

Happy Baking.

Ian

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks for this interesting, regional bread Ian.  Always nice to learn about new breads of the world.

The crumb looks perfect.

John

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks John.  Good to hear from you.   this was a fun one to bake.

Regards

Ian

dosco's picture
dosco

Excellent, I'll have to give this a try.

Portuguese sweet bread is one of my favorites ... I actually baked some last week and will update my blog accordingly.

-Dave

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks Dave.

i hope you give this one a try to and let me know how it turns out.

Ian

bbegley's picture
bbegley

Looks tasty!

isand66's picture
isand66

Thank you!

dosco's picture
dosco

Ian:

I mixed up some dough this morning and plan to bake sometime tomorrow (probably afternoon or evening).

I deviated a bit from your recipe. I don't have any spelt flour so I replaced it with KAF whole wheat. Also, instead of using 100% bread flour, I used about 1/3 AP and the remainder KAF bread flour.

The dough behaved a bit differently than all-wheat-flour dough. Despite being soft and wet/moist, the dough was quite firm and my Kitchen Aid was at a disadvantage as the dough didn't really stick to the sides of the mixing bowl. I added more water (perhaps 40 g) and that seemed to loosen things up enough so the dough behaved more like "regular" dough." I did have to stop and start the KA several times to scrape the dough off the kneading hook ... after about 10 minutes of on, off, scrape, and knead (between speeds 1 and 2) I was rewarded with a smooth dough that windowpaned easily.

More later(!).

Regards-
Dave

 

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks for the update Dave.  Look forward to hearing how it turns out.

Regards,
Ian

dosco's picture
dosco

Ian:

So I baked this morning...mixed results. When I mixed the dough it was incredibly stiff and I had a hard time kneading it in my kitchen aid. I thought I had windowpane but the oven spring was very poor. Undoubtedly part of this was my use of about 1/4 AP flour along with corn, rye, and WW flours.

I used my usual hearth baking at 550dF with steam for 15 minutes, then about 10-15 min at 475dF. Flavor is very nice.

Pics later.

Regards-

Dave

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Hi Dave,

If you want to try this again, I would suggest you try my directions for mixing. Don't worry about a window pane and just mix on speed 1 for about 6 minutes.  Put it in your oiled bowl and let it rest for 15 minutes then do about 3 stretch and folds and repeat this 2 -3 more times.  Also, if your flour is eating up more water than I indicated, add more until you have a nice soft dough.  This dough should not be very stiff.

I look forward to hearing how your first attempt tastes anyway.

Let me know if I can help you in any way.

Regards,
Ian

dosco's picture
dosco

Ian:
I made some levain on Saturday and whipped up a batch of dough this morning. For the white flour I used 100% KAF Bread flour.

This time I decided to make the flour dough first until I thought I had good gluten development, then I folded/kneaded in the corn scald.

Side note ... corn scald was like a rock after 15 minutes of cooling. Was this your experience as well?

More later.

Regards-
Dave

 

PS: sorry I haven't yet posted pics of my first attempt ... busy busy.

 

 

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Look forward to hearing how your second attempt comes out.  Can't say that my corn scald was rock hard at all.

Regards,
ian

dosco's picture
dosco

4 small boules in the oven now. Oven spring appears to be much better.

Pics in a few.

 

Regards-
Dave

 

dosco's picture
dosco

Ian:
I made 4 loaves from the batch of dough and baked them at 500dF with steam. Some had better oven spring than the others, but definitely a marked difference from the first attempt. Flavor is interesting with corn notes under the main sourdough flavor. The texture is fascinating, light and airy and springy.

 

The crumb shot is from the loaf with the least amount of oven spring (the one on the very bottom of the pic of all 4 loaves). I was a bit surprised to see that the crumb was so airy.

Pics below.

I think I'll try this again. Next time I may sweeten it to make it more Brazilian (based on the few recipes I saw online). I may ask my mother (she was born and grew up in Brazil).

Regards-
Dave

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks for the update Dave.  These look awesome and must taste great.  I'm happy I could inspire you and look forward to hearing about your further experiments.  Making them a little sweet couldn't hurt them.

Regards,
ian

dosco's picture
dosco

The latest Broa de Milho was rather sour as a result of using my SD starter, so I thought it might be interesting to try another batch of it by making a poolish with commercial yeast, with all of the WW and Rye flours, and a bit of KAF white BF.

I'm interested in the corn flavor and if it will be more "clear" or "bright" without the sourdough flavors.

Results to follow.

Cheers-
Dave

 

dosco's picture
dosco

So I made a batch of dough this morning. I mixed the BF with water and let it autolyse for about 25 minutes, then added yesterday's poolish (sat out overnight) and kneaded in 2 stages: 1st stage was 5 minutes with a 5 minute rest, 2nd stage was 5 minutes with another 5 minute rest.

It sure seemed to me that using the poolish made for a better dough...it came together nicely and it didn't take long to form a smooth and elastic dough.

The 3rd knead was about 10 minutes to incorporate the corn scald.

I plan on baking tonight.

Regards-
Dave

 

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Thanks for the update Dave.

These sound great.  Can't wait to hear how they taste.

Regards,

Ian

dosco's picture
dosco

Ian:
This batch came out nicely ...  this bread, regardless of commercial or natural yeast, makes some OUTSTANDING toast.

The flavor of this version was far less complex than the SD version, and the corn note is very subtle and almost imperceptible. It has a very mild flavor. One interesting result of using corn is the moisture level of the finished bread - it is *very* moist.

I may take a look at the other versions of corn flour that are available ... perhaps a finer grind will lead to a different/better result. Next batch will also have some sugar for a sweetened version.

In this variation the poolish was 70% hydration, and when I mixed the remaining water with the BF it was also at 70% hydration ... the corn scald brings a lot of moisture to the dough and when the bulk fermentation was done it was a loose, jiggly mess (in a good way, lol). I think I'm going to cut down on the hydration on the next batch. I cut the dough into 4 pieces, gently shaped 4 boules with minimal handling/degassing (I tried the "interlocking stitch" method attributed to Robertson), and baked at 505dF with steam.

Oven spring was pretty good on some of the loaves, crumb shot is from the loaf with the least oven spring.

Regards-
Dave

 

 

 

isand66's picture
isand66

Looks and sounds great.

Thanks for the update.