Breads (Yeast) - Loaves

Spinach Loaf (Yudane Method)

April 05, 2019 | Recipe by Bake with Paws
Spinach Loaf

Spinach Loaf

Few years ago, I baked Spinach Bread with a straight dough method.  It is soft and nice but I discovered that the bread can be even softer, moist and stay fresh longer with the Yudane method.  I would highly recommended this recipe if you want to try Spinach Bread.

Yudane method is quite similar to Tangzhong (water-roux) method.  Both methods are scalding method. For the Yudane method, boiling water is used to scald the flour instead of cooking over the fire.  Please click here to see the differences between  Yudane vs Tangzhong Method. 

I have other Yudane Method recipes that you may like to try too.   Yudane Method Bread recipes.

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 - Spinach Loaf  (Yudane Method)

Yields: 1 loaf 


90g bread flour  (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
80g boiling water

Main Dough:
360g bread flour (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
1 3/4 tsp instant yeast
3 tbsp (30g) brown sugar
1 1/4 tsp salt
18g butter, room temperature
150g fresh milk or full cream milk 
80g spinach 

450g Loaf pan (20 X 10 X 10 cm)


  1. Add bread flour in a bowl, pour the boiling water and mix well with spatula or spoon.  
  2. Cling film and place in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight.  
  3. Take out from the fridge 30 minutes before using to return to room temperature.
I made the yudane dough 4 hours before and left it outside instead in the fridge. It works too.

  1. Blend spinach and milk in a food processor until fine.
  2. Put all ingredients (except butter) and including yudane dough (tear into pieces) into the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix with paddle attachment for 2 minutes or until all incorporated.  Change to hook attachment and knead for another 3 minutes or until the dough comes together. Add in butter and continue kneading for another 10 - 13 minutes or until the dough comes together, become elastic, smooth and reaches window pane stage.  I noticed that it is harder to achieve a very thin window pane  with Yudane method dough. It could be due to the gelatinization of its starch.  It is fine if your window pane is not very thin as long as you have kneaded the dough long enough. During the whole kneading process, I stopped few times to scrape down the dough from the hook to be sure it is evenly kneaded and also to prevent the motor from overheating.
  3. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 60 minutes or until double in size in a large greased bowl, covered with cling film or kitchen towel (I normally left it on the same mixing bowl).
  4. Punch down the dough to release the air. Transfer the dough to a clean floured surface then divide into 2 equal portions. Form each portion to a strand/long log. Roll out each dough with a rolling pin into long rectangle shape. Roll up the dough like Swiss Roll until a small log is formed. 
  5. Place all dough in the prepared loaf pan.  Let it rise for another 45 to 60 minutes or until double in size. 
  6. 15 minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 180C.
  7. Bake at preheated oven for 25 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
  8. Remove bread from oven and let them cool on rack completely before slicing.
The temperature and baking time are guidelines.  Adjust accordingly to your oven.


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. Can i make a plain flavour? What do i use to replace the spinach?

    1. Hi there,

      Thank you for your questions. If you prepare plain flavour bread, please use the following recipe instead:

      Cheers and happy baking :)

  2. Hihi, what's the taste of this spinach bread? Can tell if spinach was used? Thanks!

    1. Hi, thank you for asking. The texture is soft, fluffy and moist with very mild spinach flavor. If you look at the colour and taste it then can tell it is spinach. Otherwise, by taste itself is a bit hard as the flavor is very mild.

      Cheers :)

    2. Thanks a lot for the detailed description! Am going to make it today 😊

    3. You are most welcome :) Hope you will like it. Happy baking.

  3. Helooo can i use spinach powder? And the measurement thankyou

  4. Hii..can i use spinach powder? And the measurement. Thankyou

    1. Hi, thank you for asking.
      Yes, of course. Sorry, I do not know the measurement because I never used Spinach Powder before. I guess you have to experiment with it. You should use 200g - 230g of milk in total. But, not sure how much spinach powder.

      Cheers :)

  5. Thank you for the great recipe. I wonder if I can use the spinach stem also. I hate to waste food.

    1. Hi, thanks for asking. Yes, of course. The reason I didn't use is because the spinach didn't come with stem.

      Cheers :)

  6. Do u gv this in sourdough recipe?

    1. Hi, yes. Please see the below:

      I used less spinach in sourdough as too much spinach will affect the dough for sourdough baking.

      Cheers :)

  7. Hi, what would happen if I didn't use sugar? Can sugar be skipped in this recipe? Thank you.

    1. Hi, thanks for your interest in this recipe. Sugar give taste and also helping to speed up the proofing. You can skip sugar or replace with honey.

      Cheers :)


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