Recreate the soft and fluffy milk bread from your favorite Asian bakery at home! This is one of the simplest recipes I’ve found to date.
Although I live near a medium sized city, I am nowhere near a decent Asian bakery. The closest one is a good 2 hours away – without traffic. So whenever we go back to Delaware to visit my dad, we almost always take a trip to Philadelphia’s Chinatown. I load up on my favorite bakery items and spend waaaay too much money there. The owners used to know my mom and would give her some free pastries with every purchase, but sadly, I don’t get the same superstar treatment. At least not yet.
Since I can never get my fill of Asian pastries, I’ve definitely tried recreating them at home. Most of them have not been up to par, sadly. However, this Asian milk bread recipe caught my eye. It featured simple ingredients with an easy recipe. Why not give it a try?
Sadly, I let my bread rise too long (I had some errands to run). While my bread rose beautifully, it sunk a bit while I was warming up the oven. Regardless, this bread was still fantastic. It was nice and fluffy, and it even stayed soft for a few days (I did re-heat them in the microwave for about 20 seconds).
Because I was a bit pressed for time, I did not make the simple syrup. I should have, since the bread needed a bit of a sweet kick. However, I was still perfectly happy slathering on some hazelnut spread on each piece. This bread was a great foray into what I hope will be some successful Asian bread making!
Asian milk bread
- ⅔ cup heavy cream room temperature
- 1 cup milk (I used 1%) room temperature
- 1 large egg room temperature
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup cake flour
- 3 and ½ cups bread flour plus more if needed
- 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 and ½ teaspoons salt
- egg wash (whisk 1 egg with 1 teaspoon of water)
- simple syrup (optional) (dissolve 2 teaspoons of sugar in 2 teaspoons of hot water)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment or in a large bowl if mixing by hand, add the ingredients in the following order: heavy cream, milk, egg, sugar, cake flour, bread flour, yeast and salt.
- Turn the mixer to the "stir" setting and let it knead for 15 minutes. You may need to stop the mixer to scrape down the sides or even add more bread flour if it appears too sticky (I added about another cup or so of flour). Your dough should be smooth and pliable but not sticky.
- Transfer the dough to a well-oiled bowl. Cover with a damp towel and place in a warm spot to rise and double. I placed mine in my oven on the "proof" setting. This will take about 1 hour.
- Generously grease two baking pans and set aside (I used an 8" round cake pan and a standard loaf pan).
- Transfer the dough back to the mixer and mix on the "stir" setting for 5 minutes to get rid of the air bubbles. Cut the dough in half.
- Take one of the halves of dough and shape them however you want. I divided one of the halves of dough into thirds and shaped them into rectangles and placed them into my loaf pan. I took the other half of dough and divided into 8 pieces. I took each piece, rolled it into a long strand, and tied a knot, tucking the ends into itself. Then I placed them in my round pan.
- Let the dough rise in a warm place for another hour.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F. Brush the top of your dough with the egg wash and bake in your preheated oven for 23-25 minutes or until the tops are golden brown. Remove the pans from the oven and brush the tops with the simple syrup if desired.
Sadly for me too, the nearest good Asian Bakery is about an hour away with almost horrendous traffic (Seattle). So this recipe will fit the bill once I get the cake flour needed to bake it. Sounds yummy!
You can always make your own cake flour so you don’t have to buy it. Take one cup of all-purpose flour and substitute two Tablespoons of it with corn starch. Voila – homemade cake flour!
I didn’t know you were from Delaware! What part? I spent a large chunk of my childhood in Pike Creek, went to CCSA for middle school and CSW for high school. The Asian community is small enough, I bet we have some 2nd/3rd degree connections 🙂
I lived near Pike Creek as well! I don’t think I’m familiar with CCSA middle school but CSW was established after I had graduated. And you’re right – I bet we know some of the same people! Feel free to contact me offline at Evabakes at hotmail dot com and we can keep chatting!