The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

1 and 1/2 Tries at Brioche

davidg618's picture

1 and 1/2 Tries at Brioche

Before today I'd never tasted nor baked Brioche. Yesterday I began by making the dough,  and today I made two tries baking it.

First Try

The crumb, and flavor, seem to be what I should expect, from this dough, so for a first time, ever, I'm pleased, especially after reading all the cautions--offered by the author, and elsewhere--about making high fat percentage doughs; but as you can see I have a long way to go learning to construct these rascals correctly. I've nicknamed the one in the upper left corner Nearly Headless Nick (Harry Potter fans will recognize the name.)

The formula is from "Baking Artisan Bread" by Ciril Hitz, and I followed it and the author's instructions to the letter, except constructing the individual rolls.  The ones shown were constructed using the little-ball-on-top-of-the-bigger ball approach. Additionally, the intructions called for 90g of dough for each mold, and I thought my molds were the same size as those shown in the author's pictures. They weren't.  One head slipped off entirely. The oven spring in this dough made them look more like popovers than brioche in my forms.

So I tried again. using some of the reserved dough--thus the 1 and 1/2 tries--with three changes. First I reduced the quantity for each mold to 65g, secondly, I'd baked the first four at 345°F on the oven's convection mode, as recommended by the author; the 1 and 1/2 try I used the recommended 265°F thermal mode setting, and lastly, I used the author's novel shaping. Here's an attempt to explain it in words. Starting with the dough pre-shaped into a ball, by pressing and rolling with one finger two balls--one large, one small--connected by a thin neck of dough is created. Then, the neck is stretched to three fingers width, the larger ball is turned into a doughnut shape, and the smaller ball--neck intact--is passed through the doughnut hole, and the doughnut shape is gently coaxed to collapse around the now curved neck. (I  hope readers can visualize this. I couldn't have done it with out the author's pictures.)

Try 1 and 1/2

Photo says it for me. Far from perfect, but OK.

David G


Pablo's picture

I haven't tried brioche myself, but what a great job of learning from your first bake and making appropriate corrections.  They look yummy.


xaipete's picture

I think they look pretty good, David. I can't tell from the picture whether you used small brioche tins or big ones--must be small from the amount of dough you used. The crumb looks very brioche-like in color and texture. Brioche reminds me of Challah.


jemar's picture

I can understand your description of how to make the buns because that is how I made them when on a breadmaking course with Richard Bertinet, and the pictures in his book match your description too!  Yours looks good and I bet they tasted good, I love Brioche, I hadn't tasted it before making it from his book and now I have made it many times.

davidg618's picture

for your encouraging remarks. If you've been reading some of my earlier postings, Brioche is the third dough, after classic baguettes, and sourdough (pain au levain) I wanted to feel comfortable with, before branching out. I certainly won't claim I've mastered them--probably never will--but this dough, despite the finished bread's visual flaws, really gave me increased confidence. I generally don't rely on a windowpane test, trusting instead my developing feel of the dough, but, heeding author Hitz' warning, I tested this dough. I could have reglazed the kitchen window with the result.

Now it's practice, practice, practice.

David G