Brioches  

Brioche 

Brioscie cu tuppu 

 

Brioches are delicious, soft, tender bread-rolls, rich with butter and eggs. 

The brioches are offered in bakeries, bars, fast food and take out food shops; they are served with marmalade or with gelato at breakfast, at tea time or as a snack all day long! 

In the province of Palermo and in Palermo, the brioches are also filled with sweet-smelling and fine flavored meat ragu’ and peas to became tasty nosh specialties called ravazzate which are baked and rizzuoli which are fried. 

 

The dough to prepare the brioches can be kneaded by hand, but it is a hard job that will present some difficulties: we suggest using an electric mixer in order to simplify this part of the preparation. 

 

INGREDIENTS 

 

·         1 ½ lb. unbleached all purpose flour - Divided  

·         ½ cup of milk 

·         1 oz. fresh active yeast  

·         2 oz. sugar 

·         12 oz butter, at room temperature 

·         6 medium eggs 

·         ¾ teaspoon of salt 

·         Egg wash. 1 egg beaten with 2 tablespoons of water and a pinch of salt  

 

PREPARATION 

 

The Starter for the Dough 

 

In a small bowl dissolve ¼ of a cup of warm water with the yeast. In a larger bowl mix the sugar and 1 cup of the weighted flour, add the milk and the yeast mixture; combine until it is well blended and a soft dough is obtained. If it is too dry add some water (no more than ¼ of a cup), if it is too watery add some of the flour (no more than 2 oz.).  

Make a ball and with a sharp knife make a cut crosswise on the top to facilitate the dough to rise; cover and set aside in a warm place until it almost doubles in size, 1 to 2 hours. 

 

The Dough 

 

Place into the mixer the remaining flour and the starter, use the paddle and start to mix at a slow speed. 

Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and wait until each additional egg is absorbed into the dough, before adding more. 

 

The Brioche 

 

Add the butter, a small piece at a time and wait until each piece is absorbed into the dough, before adding more.  

Add the salt, increase the speed to a medium and beat for 3 minutes.  

At the beginning the dough will appear crumbled and sticky but as it kneads it will turn into a shiny and elastic dough. 

Scrape the dough from the side and bottom of the bowl and change the paddle to a dough hook. At a medium speed, knead dough and after a while the dough will pull away from the side and bottom of the bowl and it will be soft and satin. 

Total time to mix the dough should be between 15 to 20 minutes. 

Remove the hook, cover the dough and let it rest for about 2 hours in a warm place: dough should almost double in size  

After 2 hours: place the dough onto a floured surface and fold it a few times to form a ball, transfer it into a greased bowl and refrigerate overnight or at least for 5 hours, before using it. 

The rest period in the refrigerator will mature the dough, it will chill the butter and make the dough firm and easily to handle. 

 

The Brioches 

 

Transfer the chilled dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide it into 4 pieces.  

One piece at a time, knead it briefly and divide it into 4 pieces.  Repeat and at the end you will have a total of 16 pieces of dough; keep them refrigerated 

Of the total 16 pieces, use 15 portions to make the brioches and 1 piece for garnish, the tuppo. 

 

Briefly knead a piece of dough at a time, make it round and shape with your hands to resemble a bread roll. Place each piece on top of a clean and lightly dusted kitchen towel and cover. 

Repeat this operation until you make the 15 buns. 

 

Brioches with Gelato

 

Briefly knead the remaining piece of dough; stretch and hand roll it into a strip 15 inches long. Cut at 1 inch intervals and shape each piece into a little ball. 

Using your finger wet the top of each brioche and place one little ball on the top, the tuppo

Rest them in a warm place for about 1 hour. 

Proceed with the baking: place the brioches into a baking pan greased or lined with parchment paper and lightly brush the brioches with the egg wash. 

 

Bake at 375 degrees, for a total of 25 minutes. 

Check after 15 minutes and if they are baking too fast, tent with aluminum foil and bake for the additional 10 minutes, or until they are a golden color.