The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Flat Brioche

Mike Sisson's picture
Mike Sisson

Flat Brioche

All of the pictures I've seen of this lovely bread are tall, stately looking loaves.  When I tried to make it tonight using James Beard's recipe from Beard on Bread I came out with a fairly flat loaf.  I used the right amount of yeast but my loaf is only about half the size of others that I have seen.  The one thing that I did do differently was using a 9x5 loaf pan because I don't have 8x4's.  Would that acccound for such a stunted loaf?  The bread did not seem to get much of a lift (spring?  is that the right word?) either.  Any help would be great.

Yerffej's picture


A 9x5 pan is 40% larger than an 8x4 pan and therein lies your main issue.  Too much pan, not enough dough.

Also if you are just beginning with baking bread I would recommend that you master a very simple recipe like Beard's Basic White Bread as this is a recipe that provides guidance through very detailed instruction along with graphics to show you how.  Tackling brioche is not something for most beginners and as a side note, true brioche is quite different from Beard's recipe.

Welcome to the site,


Mike Sisson's picture
Mike Sisson

I've done half a dozen other types with fair success so far both from Beard (loved the Italian Feather Bread) and from a couple of food sites.  Sounds like the pan was the main culprit.  Crumb looked good, just not very tall and the exterior didn't get that nice browning from the various pictures.

MIchael_O's picture

Jeff is right. I will add, the reason for the dough not rising is due to the weight/pressure on the dough. This is actually what engineers study in hydrodynamics, the pressure is mgh or the (mass of dough * gravity * height). Your height is more than called for, therefore the lifting action of the yeast is retarded by the excessive pressure.

In short, reduce the dough by 29%, or take out a little less than a third, next time.



clazar123's picture

This is the best and easiest brioche recipe I have ever made and I have made it dozens of times the last 2 years. Floyd makes rolls but I have done plenty of loafs,coffeecakes and buns with it. A stand mixer (I have a K5A-35 yrs old)  makes this a snap.I don't have the Beard book to compare recipes.

Have fun!