CHARLOTTE – There is a newer technique in town for stabilizing bread dough- if you have yet to be in the know- its Tangzhong, the Asian yeast bread technique that creates sponge like soft bread! Obviously, there are many types of doughs, and their flavor and crust characteristics. This technique from Japan was made popular by a famous chef across Asia. It cooks a small amount of flour and liquid (water or milk) in a yeast recipe very briefly before combining the thick mixture with the remaining ingredients. Not only does the starch in the flour absorb more liquid; since heating the starch with water creates structure, it’s able to hold onto that extra liquid throughout the kneading, baking, and cooling processes. Since there’s less free (unabsorbed) water in the dough, it’s less sticky and easier to knead; The bread or rolls may rise higher, due to more water creating more internal steam; Having retained more water during baking, bread and rolls will be moister, and will stay soft and fresh longer. One other note- please use unbleached-unbromated bread flour- it is more natural and has a better flavor. This particular recipe and method works best for a great meal of traditional comfort foods- picture a roasted hen, sauteed garden vegetables and a wild rice pilaf. Now, put on some good NEW music-try “Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra – Promises”, and make some memories! Enjoy~
Soft Rolls using Tangzhong Bread Method (makes 12 rolls or 1 loaf)
Prep Time: 35 Minutes | On the Table: 2-3 hours
¾ cup Whole Milk | ½ cup Water | 3 teaspoon instant Dry Yeast
4 cups Unbleached-Unbromated Enriched Bread Flour
1 ½ tablespoon Granulated Sugar | 1 ¾ teaspoon Kosher Salt
1 Whole Farm Egg | 1 Egg Yolk | 3 tablespoon Unsalted Butter
Tangzhong– 2 tablespoons Unbleached-Unbromated Enriched Bread Flour
¼ cup Whole Milk | 2 tablespoon water
(You can start this the night prior- or the day of) Get out the Stand Mixer with the dough hook attachment! Heat your milk and water in the microwave for about 25 seconds and to tepid – around 100-110 degrees F. Place the mixture in your Stand Mixer bowl along with the yeast and the sugar and agitate slightly. Set the timer for 10 minutes and let this bloom. While the yeast is blooming, make your Tangzhong in a non-stick saucepan by whisking together the flour, milk and water until dissolved. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens into a thick paste, immediately remove from the heat. Scale out your flour and mix in the salt into the flour mixture with a fork. Add this to your yeast mixture and mix on medium low. Carefully add in your egg yolk whole egg and butter. Mix for 3 minutes, stop the mixer, scrape the sides. Add in the Tangzhong and mix on medium for 5 minutes until the dough pulls away from the side of the bowl. Cover and place in a warm spot (away from sunlight) and let rise for 90 minutes.
Once the dough has risen, punch the dough down and need by hand. Preheat your oven to 400- you will need to adjust the temperature down. Now… if you are making a loaf- grease your loaf pan and roll out your dough into a 12×10 rectangle. Roll from one end to the other (like you are rolling a cigar) and place the seam side down in the pan. Egg wash the top of the loaf and sprinkle with sesame seeds and sea salt and let rise for an additional 30-45 minutes. Bake at 360 degrees for around 35-40 minutes. For rolls- make a large dough ball and cut in ½, then cut those in 6 even size pieces. Round the dough on your counter, place in a muffin pan. Egg wash the top of the loaf and sprinkle with sesame seeds and sea salt and let rise for an additional 30-45 minutes. Bake at 380 degrees for around 14-16 minutes. Share meals together, Food is Life, Food is Love!
Chef Glenn is a corporate chef based in Waxhaw- please send any feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org