And my quest for good homemade gluten free bread carries on today with a new success: the most perfect brioche! 😛 It’s so incredibly light and fluffy, it’s unreal… It feels like the real thing to me which is something I never thought I’d say about gluten free bread. lol
I know I already posted a recipe for brioche style burger buns on my blog a few years ago and to this day it’s probably one of my most popular recipes. BUT I’ve learnt so much since then, especially when it comes to bread making, that I decided to revisit it. I spent the whole week making batch after batch and after overdosing on a lifetime’s supply of brioche… I think this is it. I’d say it’s a thousand times better! 😀
My boyfriend even got himself some ‘real’ wheaty brioche for a taste test and comparison (he’s my guinea pig lol) and after a few tweaks, he was genuinely impressed with the texture and even said he preferred mine (more flavour). I take that as a win.
And as a bonus, the dough is also much easier to handle than my previous recipe. 🙂
NOTES / TIPS:
Use bread flour / strong flour
This type of flour blend is higher in protein and ideal for baking bread. I used Freee Foods (Doves Farm) as this is what’s available to me here in the UK (and it’s fantastic!). If you don’t have access to a gluten free strong flour blend where you live, have a look online for recipes that teach how to make it yourself from scratch. It’s well worth it. Otherwise you can try using an all purpose flour blend, but the texture won’t be as good (I tried it!). Also, different flour blends require different amounts of liquid which can affect the consistency of the dough.
Don’t skip the tapioca starch
It has a uniquely elastic texture that is essential in this recipe. I know people hate having to source a bunch of ‘exotic’ flours, but believe me you won’t regret it! It’s the secret to great gluten free baked goods! You sometimes can find it in supermarkets here in the UK, but your best bet is Asian/Chinese shops which always stock it. Otherwise you can also order it online from sites like Sous Chef UK.
How to reheat / revive leftovers
You can warm them up in the microwave to soften them up again. Or did you know that you can wet / run stale bread under the tap quickly and bake them again for a few minutes (until dry)? They come out as good as new! 🙂
- 65g whole milk
- 20g sugar (granulated or caster)
- ½ tsp dry active yeast (I used Allinson)
- 85g gluten free bread flour blend (I used Freee Foods)
- 15g tapioca starch/flour (also known as cassava)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp xanthan gum (add ¾ tsp if your blend doesn't already contain it, the one I use already does)
- 1 egg (50g)
- 40g butter (add ¼ tsp salt if using unsalted)
- Olive oil (to brush over / second round of proofing)
- Egg wash (i.e. beaten egg, to brush over / before baking)
For small brioche (like mine): 15 minutes
For larger burger buns: up to 20 mins or so
* The flour blend I'm using (Freee Foods by Doves Farm) already contains xanthan gum. I've added a little extra in my recipe. If the blend you're using doesn't already contain some, make sure you add the adjusted amounts I included in brackets in the ingredients list).
PREPARE THE YEAST:
- Warm up the milk in the microwave (in 10 seconds increments) or in a pan on a hob. Dip your finger in to check the temperature, it should be somewhere between lukewarm and hot. You don’t want it to be boiling hot or too cold otherwise the yeast won’t work. You can also use a food thermometer and aim for about 40C (104F).
- Add in the sugar and stir to dissolve.
- Then stir in the yeast and let it sit in a warm place for a few minutes, until it dissolves and bubbles up. Note: don’t skip the sugar. This is what the yeast reacts with to create these bubbles and this is how you know that your yeast is working. If nothing happens, this means your yeast may be too old or the milk isn’t warm enough.
- Note: On a nice warm sunny day, I like to place the bowl on a window sill directly in the sun. But on cold winter days, you can place it near a heater/radiator or switch on your oven to the lowest setting and place your bowl on or near the opened door.
PREPARE THE DOUGH:
- In a large bowl, mix the the flours, xanthan gum and baking powder together. Note: don’t forget to add salt if using unsalted butter.
- Then add the butter (melted in the microwave first – about 30 seconds) as well as the egg and frothy yeast mixture and mix with a spatula until smooth and lump free.
LET IT REST (FIRST ROUND OF PROOFING):
- Wrap your bowl tightly with cling film and place it back in a warm place for 30 minutes to an hour to allow the yeast act. Note: don’t skip this step as it’s essential for the recipe to work.
REFRIGERATE YOUR DOUGH:
- Once your dough has proofed and risen, put in the fridge to make it more solid (easier to handle) and allow it to rest some more. Now the length is all up to you. A lot of professional chefs recommend refrigerating it overnight or for up to 24 hours for the best texture and flavour. But if you’re impatient or pressed for time, 2 to 3 hours will be just fine.
SHAPE INTO BREAD ROLLS
- Dust a bit of extra bread flour on your work surface (I like to work on a sheet of baking paper to prevent sticking).
- Spoon a small portion of brioche dough on top (I like to use an ice cream scoop for this). Note: make sure you don’t squash the dough as you do so. We want to retain all those little air pockets that the yeast created.
- Carefully toss it about in the flour with your hands and roll it into a ball, but don’t knead/squish it! We just want to shape it into a ball and cover it with a light coating of flour without deflating those air pockets. Note: carefully fix any cracks as best as you can by pinching them closed with your fingers.
- Place your dough balls on baking tray (here I actually used a springform cake tin) or in a muffin tin (greased with butter or cooking spray).
LET THEM REST AGAIN (SECOND ROUND OF PROOFING):
- Brush a light coating of olive oil on top of your brioche rolls.
- Cover your brioches with a damp cloth and let them rest again in a warm place for 45 minutes to an hour.
- Meanwhile, pre-heat your oven to 190C (374F). Note: what I do on a cold day is place the tray on a chair near the pre-heating oven.
BAKE YOUR BRIOCHE ROLLS:
- Once the proofing is done, brush some egg wash (i.e. beaten egg) on top of your brioche rolls.
- Bake in a pre-heated oven until the top is a nice golden brown colour. This is about 15 minutes for small ones (like mine), but they may need up to 20 mins or so if your buns are larger.
- Let them cool down in their mould for about 10 minutes, then place them upside down on a plate or cooling rack to cool down some more. Note: carefully run a spatula all around or underneath to unstick them if necessary.
HOW TO REVIVE LEFTOVERS / STALE BREAD:
- Reheat leftovers in the microwave to soften them up again (10-20 seconds).
- Or you can also wet them / run them under tap water quickly and bake them again for a few minutes in the oven. I only learnt this trick recently and was so impressed, they come out as good as new! :O
Hope you enjoy these! 🙂