This soft and buttery bread is a French staple and makes a divine breakfast. Slice it up and turn it into a decadent French toast!
Those of you who follow me on Facebook know that my family and I visited Paris and Barcelona recently for spring break. We left on a Friday evening and returned the following Saturday.
Every day, we walked about 8 miles. And every hundred or so feet, we would see a French patisserie, or bakery. These amazing shops were filled with oodles of French pastries, confectionaries and breads. Surprisingly, I didn’t eat as many pastries as I had envisioned, but I still ate my weight in French pastries each day.
On the last evening of our trip, we stayed in a chain hotel (we had stayed in AirBNBs for the rest of the trip). Surprisingly, the breakfast buffet at the hotel was nothing short of amazing. The scrambled eggs were not made from a carton. The pastries were fresh. The juice was freshly squeezed. It was the complete opposite of what I was used to from a hotel breakfast buffet.
One item that I particularly enjoyed at the breakfast buffet was the French brioche. The hotel had a huge loaf available for guests to slice on their own. I cut a large slice and shared half of it with Addie. I slathered on some fresh jam and sunk my teeth into each bite like it was my last meal. Since it was so good, I went back for a second slice a few minutes later.
After we returned from our vacation, I knew I had to make my own French brioche. I found this particular recipe on King Arthur Flour and liked that the technique was a bit different than the other breads I’ve tried. This recipe asks you to mix the dough for a good 15 minutes.
My final brioche was a bit denser and harder than I wanted it to be. Don’t get me wrong – it’s still a great recipe, and I know that it would make for a strong and sturdy French toast. But, the brioche that I loved in France was even softer and more cloud-like.
I’ll be on the hunt for another recipe, so stay tuned!
- 2 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
- 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 and 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 1 Tablespoon instant yeast
- 3 large eggs
- 1/4 cup lukewarm water
- 10 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, mix all of the ingredients together on medium speed. You'll want to mix the dough for at least 15 minutes so please be patient. The dough will appear gloppy and sticky at first but will eventually smooth out after 15 minutes.
- Transfer the dough (it will be soft) to a well-grease bowl. Cover and allow to rise for 1 hour. Then transfer to the refrigerator and allow it to chill for 5 hours or up to overnight.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and shape it into an 8" log. Transfer to a well-grease loaf pan. Allow it to rise until it is about 1 and 1/2" from the top of the pan. This could take about 5 hours or so.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes.
- Allow the bread to cool completely before serving or turning into French toast.