Breads (Yeast) - Loaves

Pandan Chocolate Milk Loaf (Tangzhong Method)

January 08, 2018 | Recipe by Bake with Paws
Pandan Chocolate Milk Loaf

Pandan Chocolate Milk Loaf

My family eat a lot of bread and this gives me the opportunity to experiment with a variety of recipes with the confidence that it won’t ever go wasted! 

This Pandan Chocolate Milk Loaf is the result of one of my experiments and it happens to be my Sister-in-Law’s favourite. I like this very much too as it looks attractive, the texture is soft and the aroma of pandan is just so delicious.

I made this Pandan Chocolate Milk Loaf using Tangzhong method.  Tangzhong method is quite similar to Yudane method.  Both methods are scalding method. For Tangzhong method, a small portion of dough is cooked over the fire.   

Please click here to see the differences between  Yudane vs Tangzhong Method. 

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.

Recipe - Pandan Chocolate Milk Loaf  (Tangzhong Method)

Yields:  1 loaf


40g bread flour
192g water

Pandan Dough:
160g bread flour
½ tsp instant yeast
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp milk powder
¼ tsp salt
15g butter
15g whished egg
52g pandan juice (blend 100g water with 10 pandan leaves, squeeze the juice and leave it overnight in the fridge and use the bottom concentrated juice)

Chocolate and Milk Dough:
320g bread flour
1 tsp instant yeast
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp milk powder
¾ tsp salt
30g butter
35g whished egg
105g fresh milk
1 tbsp cocoa powder

25 X 12 X 11 cm loaf pan


How to make Tangzhong:
  1. In a sauce pan, combine flour and water.  Mix with whisk or spatula until no lumps. 
  2. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring consistently until the mixture becomes thicker.  Once you see some lines appear, it is ready.
  3. Remove from heat and transfer to a clean bowl to let it cool.  

  1. Line the loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. Pandan Dough:  
    1. Add all ingredients (except butter) and one quarter of tangzhong) into the bowl of stand mixer. Using the dough hook, knead for 3-5 minutes (Chef Kenwood mixer, speed 2.5) until the dough comes together. Add in butter and continue kneading for another 12 - 15 minutes until the dough comes together, become elastic and reaches window pane stage. 
    2. Let it rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until double in size in a large greased bowl, covered with cling film or kitchen towel.  I normally leave the dough in the stand mixer’s bowl and cover with kitchen towel. 
  3. Chocolate Milk Dough:  
    1. Repeat the same for chocolate milk dough ingredients except for cocoa powder.  
    2. After kneading process complete, take out half portion of the dough and rest in a bowl.  Add the cocoa powder in the mixing bowl with balance of the dough.  Continue kneading until the cocoa powder well combined. 
    3. Let them rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until double in size.
  4. Punch down the pandan dough to release the air. Transfer the dough to a clean floured surface then form it into a strand (about 12 inch long). Repeat the same to chocolate and milk dough. 
  5. Braid them together and place the braided dough into the prepared baking pan.  Let it proof for another 45 to 60 minutes or until double in size.
  6. Preheat oven at 190C (top & bottom heat) 170C (fan-forced)  for 10 - 15 minutes.
  7. Bake in a preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven and transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing.


Gluten forms when flour comes in contact with water.  Hydration of the flour causes the sticky and stretchy protein to form, giving structure to the bread.  This makes your bread trap air and rise. 

Gluten in dough can be developed by autolyse, resting, kneading or folding.

The windowpane test is used to determine whether the dough has been sufficiently kneaded.  By gently pulling the dough (or you may pinch off some dough) and trying to stretch it into a thin membrane.  If you are able to stretch the dough paper thin and translucent  without tearing, then the gluten is fully developed.  However, if you can stretch it without tearing but the membrane is not transparent, then the gluten is not yet fully developed.  

However, from my experience not all the recipe can achieve a thin and translucent window pane stage easily.   For example low hydration and low fat dough.  For such recipes, a reasonable window pane is good enough and it can be left to rest. Gluten will continue to develop while resting.  Exercising restraint to not over-knead the dough prevents the gluten from being overworked and broken.   Some of you may have experienced the dough breaking during the second proofing.  It is because the dough is over kneaded. 

The total kneading time for me is usually 15 minutes at low speeds except brioche dough with high fat percentage or dough using liquid fat which usually takes a little longer (maybe 18-20 mins).

From my experience, I found that high hydration dough with high percentage of fat will be easy to stretch and achieve a paper thin windowpane stage.

For kneading, please regard the timing provided as an indication only. It is only meant as a guide.  Timing may differ depending on the brand of flour and electric mixer used. The protein content may vary from one brand of flour to another.

The right flour plays a very important role in bread making.   To achieve fluffy, soft and light bread, I used Japan High Gluten Flour in most of my bread baking.  The protein content is around  12 - 13%.

The liquid measurement given is also a guide.  It is advisable to always reserve some liquid and not add it all in one go.  This would give you the opportunity to adjust if necessary. If dough is too dry, add the reserve liquid one tablespoon at a time until the right consistency.  This is because each flour absorbs water and hydrates differently. 

Please note that the proofing timing may also vary depending on your climate and environment. The humidity and temperature at your place will influence how dough rises.  
If you are unable to judge by just looking at the dough, you can do the finger poke test:
  1. First Proofing:
    • Lightly flour or oil your finger or knuckle, gently poke in the centre of the dough then remove your finger.  If it bounces back immediately without any indentation then it needs more time.
    • If the indentation stays and it doesn’t bounce back or if the dough collapses, then the it is over proved.  
    • If it bounces back just a little, then the dough is ready to be punched down and shaping.
  2. Second Proofing:
    • Lightly press the side of the proved dough with your finger.  If it bounces back immediately without any indentation, it means the dough is under proved and needs more time before baking.
    • If the indentation stays and it doesn’t bounce back, it means it has been over proved.
    • If the indentation slowly bounces back and leave a small indentation, it is ready to bake. 
    • There will be a final burst of rising once the bread is placed to bake in the oven and it is called oven spring. 
If your bread collapses or gets wrinkled on top after removing from oven, it could be because your dough over proved during the second proofing. Please proof until it rises 80 - 90% in size or is slightly below the rim of the pan.

Do also note that the baking temperature and timing provided are what works for my oven and should also be regarded as a guide only. Every oven behaves a little differently, so please adjust accordingly for your oven.


  1. Thank you for this plaited soft sweet loaf. Made it many times. Always a crowd pleaser with it’s pretty colours.

    1. Hi Mei,

      Thank you for trying this recipe. I am so happy to hear this.

      Cheers & happy baking :)

  2. This recipe looks amazing! Is there a substitute for milk powder?

    1. Hi, thank for your question. You can omit milk powder.
      Cheers :)

  3. Hi Mei, this bread looks lovely! I'm looking to make a pandan and chocolate bread and found your post. But after reading your 'Yudane vs Tangzhong method' post at the top, I would like to try making this with the yudane method as I've never tried that (I've made Hokkaido milk bread with the tangzhong method). I have checked out your recipe posts with the Yudane method but the quantities are different and I don't want to risk making a mistake, what would you suggest/advise? Thank you!

    1. Hi, thanks for visiting and reading.
      First of all, what is your pan size?

      This recipe above is for 25 X 12 X 11 cm loaf pan..

      I usually use 450g Loaf pan (20 X 10 X 10 cm) or (8" X 4" X 4") for my Japanese Soft Bread recipe. Total flour could be 325g, 350g or 365g.. depend on how tall you want the bread.

      If your loaf pan is 450g, then just use that recipe.

      Cheers.. I hope this helps :)

  4. Thanks Yeanley, for your very quick reply! Sorry I got your name wrong before (I looked at one of the above comments and mistakenly thought that was your name).
    I have 2 loaf pans; a bigger one (29 x 10.5 x 7) and a smaller one (21.5 x 11 x 6). I was thinking to use the bigger one. I suppose I'll just calculate for the amounts in your Yudane post (20% of flour) right?
    Thank you again!

    1. No worry :) Yes, just convert the above recipe to Yudane method.
      Cheers :)

  5. Hello,
    I tried your sourdough shokupan recipe using Yudane and the bread turned out amazing soft and fluffy. I would like to make this pandan chocolate flavor milk loaf using sourdough starter instead of instant yeast. Is is possible to use your sourdough shokupan recipe, divide the dough into 3 and just add in pandan juice and cocoa powder to achieve the 3 flavors? I am using an 8" x 4" x 4" pan. Appreciate your advice, and thank you so much for sharing all your lovely recipe which produces amazing results

    1. Hi, thanks for trying the Sourdough Shokupan recipe. Yes, you can use the Sourdough Shokupan to try it. But, I just afraid the pandan dough will end up to much liquid and sticky. Otherwise, please use the pandan powder if you can get it or use very concentrated pandan juice.

      Cheers :)

    2. Thank you for your guidance and advice. I tried this recipe today without the pandan dough as I don't have pandan powder. I just increase the plain and chocolate portions to make up for the pandan, and again the resulting loaf is super soft and fluffy. My rolling and braiding still need a lot of improving, so my loaf is not pretty, but the taste and texture is really good, and my family gobbled half a loaf barely after it cooled down. I am looking forward to try your other sourdough soft bread soon. Thanks for sharing.

    3. Hi, Good to hear this. Thanks for trying and your kind feedback. Practise make perfect. Keep on baking and you will get a nice looking loaf.



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