Have you ever heard of this bread? Either ways, you gotta try it out. It's not so easily available from where I come from. We only get it at couple of bakeries in Delhi. A very underrated bread, extremely soft and it's safe to say that there is no better substitute for this bread when having it with Chicken Katsu! If you're new to Yeast, here are some pointers which can help you understand the rising agent:Water: Only use Warm Water when trying to activate yeast. Both hot and cold water will kill the yeast. Use Lukewarm Water!Salt vs Sugar: Sugar helps the yeast to activate, to make it frothy and to give a better rise. Whilst, salt is the opposite, it's an anti-agent. Salt should only be incorporated in the dough towards the final stages of it.Proofing: YES IT REQUIRES PATIENCE! You need to find a warm place, a Switched Off oven is the best place to proof your bread. In areas where it's generally cold or during Winters, it will take longer to proof say about a little bit more than an hour. But during Warm Climate or/and Humid Weather, it will take relatively shorter, close to around 40 minutes.Enough about yeast! All I am saying is it’s nothing to be scared about.So, What's New in this Recipe?It's the TANGZHONG Method. Tangzhong is a roux of Flour & Water. How does it work?You basically add, flour and water in a small sauce pan and continue to stir it for 5 minutes until the water and flour comes together to form a thick lumpy paste. What does it do?It activates the Gluten even before you mix your flour with other ingredients leaving a much much stronger bind. It also creates the super soft texture in your loaf and helps in better preservation of the bread as well. Recommended but not Required:Though it's not required, it's always recommended to double proof your dough. The first proofing can take place right after the dough is kneaded into a tight ball and kept in a well oiled bowl, cling wrapped. Knock back the dough, divide into three pieces and flatten (using a rolling pin or your hands) each piece into an oval. Roll each pience like a Wrap/Roll (Kathi Roll). Put the 3 pieces for proofing one after the other in a loaf pan. Let it proof again before putting it in the oven for baking.
- 9*5 Inch Loaf Pan
- Stand Mixer (Optional)
For the Tangzhong
- 2 tbsp Bread Flour (25 gms)
- 6 tbsp Water
For the Dough
- 300 gms Bread Flour
- 2 tsp Active Dry Instant Yeast
- 120 ml Lukewarm Milk
- 30 gms Unsalted Soft Butter
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Castor Sugar
- 1 Egg
For Egg Wash
- 1 Egg
To make the Tangzhong:
- Take a small pan and add the Water and the Flour to it. Mix well before turning on the heat. Its should be lump free at this point.
- Warm the paste over Low-Medium heat until it starts to thicken, stirring consistently. Set the pan aside for it to cool down.
To make the Bread:
- Take a bowl, whisk together Sugar, Yeast and Some of the Milk and let it sit to Froth properly.
- Next, take the cooled-down Tangzhong and mix it with egg. Mix this really well!
- Add the Flour and put it onto a Plain Surface and make a well (alternatively, you may use a stand mixer as well). Add the Yeast Mixture and the Tangzhong Mixture to it.
- Start kneading the dough, add all the milk you got. Keep kneading while amalgamating Butter & Salt into the dough until it comes together to form a tight ball.
- At this point you can either put the dough directly in the loaf pan or follow the recommended but not required method (go up if you missed it). You gotta put it in either a well oiled bowl or well oiled loaf pan.
- Once the dough is proofed (either single or double), egg wash it. To egg wash, just lightly beat the egg and brush it on top of the loaf.
- Bake the loaf for approx 30 minutes (at 180°C) until golden brown. If it browns too fast, cover it with foil. Insert a toothpick or a Cake Tester to the centre to check if it's done or not! Turn onto a cooling rack to cool before slicing. Be Patient 🙂
A Japanese Milk Loaf is your best friend for Sweet French Toasts, Chicken Katsu Sandwich or even an Egg Sandwich. It pairs great with sweet spreads like Strawberry Jam and Nutella too! The world is your oyster. Go crazy with this Japanese Milk Loaf!
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