Brioche is a very indulgent bread. Or is it a cake? It’s possibly best described as a yeast-risen cake, yet it can be savoury or sweet. Be it bread or cake this brioche recipe is one that you have to bake at least once. This dough is quite sticky and unable to be shaped into the classic fluted brioche moulds, but that is the beauty of this recipe, plenty of eggs and masses of butter resulting in a luscious, rich product. It is baked in a loaf tin and is best eaten thickly sliced and toasted, or topped with poached fruit and ice cream or custard to make a fabulous dessert. Serve it with jam and ricotta for breakfast or with sautéed mushrooms or pâté as an elegant entrée.
Transfer the dough to a bowl that has been lightly greased with butter and cover with a clean tea towel (dish towel). Place in the refrigerator to prove for about 1 hour.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Press the dough down, gently knocking out most of the air inside and pressing out to form a rectangle, about
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gently knock out the air again. Press the dough out into a rectangle and fold the two sides to your left and right into the centre. The dough should be as wide as the tin is long. Press the dough down to form a rectangle and starting from the side furthest away from you, roll the dough towards you to form a log. Use the palm of your hand to close the seam running the length of the log. Place the dough into the tin, seam side down. Brush the top of the loaf with egg wash. Reduce the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4).
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