Hokkaido Milk Bread with Tangzhong: my first attempt
Hi, my friends from TFL!
This weekend I decided to "try my hands" at the Hokkaido Milk Bread with Tangzhong.
I attempted to follow Floyd's instructions (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/32997/hokkaido-milk-bread-tangzhong ), but using the amounts listed by JDYangachi (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/33900/fluffy-milk-bread ), because this would yield a loaf just the size I wanted (700-800 g).
I ended up with a very nice-looking 750-g loaf, with a nice aroma, very tasty and displaying a very soft crumb.
But, the crumb I got was not even close to the ones produced by Floyd and by YDYangachi. Clearly, neither as silky nor as fluffy as the ones they produced.
Floyd's Hokkaido Milk Bread from http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/32997/hokkaido-milk-bread-tangzhong 
YDYangachi's Fluffy Milk Bread from http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/33900/fluffy-milk-bread 
I strictly followed YDYangachi's recipe, giving the tangzhong a 12-hour rest in the fridge. My tangzhong was a little more pudding-like than Floyd's (as compared to the one he documented in his post, which seemed to be a little drier than mine).
I made the final dough using my bread machine with a 16-minute Dough cycle. The dough needed no adjustments and ended up very silky and smooth, although slightly sticky. I placed it on a slightly floured board and shaped it with just a few moves. Next, I placed the shaped loaf into a metal bread pan (similar in shape and size to Floyd`s) lined with parchment paper, loosely covered the pan and let the dough rest for 30 minutes. Next, I glazed the dough with milk, covered it again and gave it another 30-minute rest period. The result was a more-than-doubled dough, that almost reached the rim of the pan. I baked the loaf in a preheated (350 degees F) conventional oven for 40 minutes. I got something between 50% and 75% (measured by the loaf's height) oven spring.
After the loaf cooled, I cut the first two slices and tried it. Very tasty and very soft, as mentioned above. But, the crumb didn't look at all similar to Floyd's and YDYangachi's. Clearly not as fluffy.
After a while, I realized that I had missed one full phase of Floyd's directions: he gave the final dough an initial 60-minute rising period, in which his dough doubled. Only after this first rising period, did he divide the dough, shape the loaves, place them in glass pans, give them a 30-minute rise, glaze them with milk, give them an additional 15-to-30-minute rise and bake them at 350 degees F for 40 minutes.
Could this initial phase I completely missed and/or the differences between the types of pans used (glass vs metal lined with parchment paper) be the reason for the big difference in fluffiness? Could my tangzhong have been softer (undercooked) than it should (sorry, did not take a picture of it). Could something else I haven`t pinpointed be the culprit?
Thanks for any tips. Take care. Bruneski.