Sourdough Brioche (Soft and Fluffy Crumb)

by - September 21, 2020

Sourdough Brioche (Soft and Fluffy)

Sourdough Brioche (Soft and Fluffy Crumb)

Sourdough Brioche Buns

Sourdough Brioche Buns




I was very pleased with the result of my Sourdough Shokupan (Stiff Starter) recipe that I have been sharing.  I adapted the same stiff starter method to a Sourdough Brioche and it turned out rather well.   There are many who have tried the Sourdough Brioche (Liquid Starter) and they were very happy with the result but I found the stiff starter even better.  The bread proofs faster and is more moist.

This is not a traditional Brioche that is very rich and eggy.  This is a lighter Sourdough Brioche that is very fluffy and soft. It'll be good for people that would prefer something that isn't so greasy and rich and yet still enjoy the taste of Brioche. 

I have other Soft Sourdough Bread recipes that you may like to try too.

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 - SOURDOUGH BRIOCHE (SWEET STIFF STARTER)


Yields:  1 loaf

INGREDIENTS:

Sweet Stiff Starter (50% Hydration):
70g sourdough starter (100% Hydration), preferably use at its peak 
215g bread flour (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
90g water
35g sugar (I used organic brown sugar)

Main Dough:
150g bread flour (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
All stiff starter (above)
25g brown sugar (I used organic brown sugar)
1 1/8 tsp (5g) salt
30g milk powder
125g egg, whisked (from 3 medium egg, balance use for egg wash)
90g butter, room temperature

Egg Wash: 
Balance of eggs + 1 tsp water

Utensil:
Non Stick Loaf Pan (21.3 cm X 11.2 cm X 5.8 cm)

Replacement of milk powder with liquid milk :- Feed sweet stiff starter with 100g of milk and omit milk powder in the main dough.

METHOD:
  1. Sweet Stiff Starter 
    1. In a bowl of stand mixer, dilute starter with water, stir in sugar and add in bread flour.  Mix with paddle attachment until well mixed and all come together. 
    2. Cover and let it ferment until tripled. I prepared a night before and leave it in aircond room (approximately 24 - 25C room temperature) overnight until tripled.  It took about 8 - 9 hours depending on your starter.  It should take around 4 - 6 hours to get triple at room temperature at 28C - 30C. The starter should look smooth and round dome.  It shouldn't collapse.
  2. Main Dough:
    1. Put all ingredients (except butter), including all the stiff starter into a bowl of stand mixer.
    2. Slightly combine the mixture by hand with the paddle attachment before turning on the machine so that the flour will not splash out.  Using the paddle attachment, mix for 2 minutes or until all incorporated. This step is critical to prevent  an uneven mixed dough as the stiff starter is rather hard and a dough hook may not be able to mix it well enough.
    3. Change to hook attachment and knead for another 3 minutes or until the dough comes together. Add in butter and continue knead for 13 - 15 minutes or until reach window pane stage.  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. 1st Proofing/Resting:  
    1. In the same bowl, let the dough rest for 15 - 60 minutes. Keep it covered with clingfilm or use a lid.  This dough I rested for 45 minutes and the dough rose quite a lot in 45 minutes.  (I did not find any big differences between 15 minutes to 60 minutes rest.  So, please follow your schedule).
  4. Shaping:
    1. Transfer the dough to a clean floured surface then divide dough into 6 equal portions. Please use a kitchen scale if you want to be exact.  
    2. Form each portion to a ball.  
    3. Place bun onto the non-stick loaf pan.  Cover with plastic.
    • You can also shape each dough into flower buns and proof in 10 cm (4 inch) diameter pan.  Please watch the video above "how to shape flower buns"
  5. Final Proofing:
    1. Let the dough proof at a warm place until the dough rise double in size or when it reaches above the rim of the pan.  This one took approximately 3 hours at at room temperature of 30C.  The duration of proofing depends on your ambient temperature and starter.
  6. Baking:
    1. Preheat oven at 180 - 190C (top & bottom heat) for 10 - 15 minutes.
    2. Brush with egg wash.
    3. Bake in a preheated oven for 25 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown.  For flower buns, bake for 15 - 20 minutes instead or until golden brown.  Please make sure not to over bake the buns as the buns will become dry easily by the next day. 
    4. Remove bread from oven and let them cool on rack.

Sweet Stiff Starter

Main Dough



It is advisable to read the below general notes before starting baking.

GENERAL NOTES:

SOURDOUGH STARTER
A healthy starter is very crucial as advised by Baking with Gina.   It is advisable to feed your starter regularly if you want your bread to rise nicely and to use the starter (levain) at its peak.  A starter that is fed regularly will be more active in general.  If the mother starter is not strong, the bread dough will not rise a lot even though the starter is used at its peak.  

There are so many ways and methods of how to maintain the starter.  Below is my method of starter maintenance.  This is just for your reference. Please try and find a way or schedule that works best for you.

I bake almost everyday.  So, my starter is left at room temperature and I feed it twice a day every 12 hours at its peak when it is tripled.

Example
10.00 am - at ratio 1:10:10 at room temperature 26C - 27C
10.00 pm - at ratio 1:10:10 at room temperature 25C - 26C 

I feed a very small amount of 1g starter + 10g water + 10g flour if I am not baking, so that I will not end up with too much discard.  When I am baking, I will feed the starter accordingly to make up the quantity required by the recipe to be baked. If I know that I won't be baking for a few days, I will then feed it only once a day at 1:10:10, transfer to the fridge when it is doubled, and feed again 24 hours later.

If you do not bake daily or if you bake perhaps once or twice a week, then you may place your starter in the fridge and feed once a week.  But, you will need to refresh your starter 2 days before the baking day. There is no way around this, sourdough baking takes planning! 

How I judge my starter is healthy?  My starter usually tripled in size (or at least double) in within 3 - 4 hours at room temperature (27C - 28C) for feeding ratio of (1:1:1 = starter:water:flour)

When is a starter at its peak?  My sourdough starter is usually at its peak when it is tripled in the jar. The surface of my starter looks bubbling and uneven.  It usually stays at its peak within 30 - 60 minutes before it starts to reduce/fall.  

Why use starter at its peak?  This is when the starter is most active and it will result in a better rise for your bread in general.  By the way, you can use when it is doubled/before its peak too.  But, not it starts to fall.

GLUTEN DEVELOPMENT & WINDOWPANE TEST
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.

MILK POWDER 
Why do I use milk powder?  
  1. Milk or milk powder will enhance the flavour of the bread and makes the bread texture softer due to the fat content of the milk. 
  2. Milk powder is shelf stable and you can have it anytime when you want to use.  Unlike liquid milk you need to finish within a certain time before it spoils.
KNEADING TIME
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.

FLOUR
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%.

HYDRATION
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. 

PROOFING
Please note that the proofing timing may also vary depending on your climate, environment, flour and your starter. 

If you are unable to judge by just looking at the dough, you can do the finger poke test:

Proofing:
  1. 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.
  2. If the indentation stays and it doesn’t bounce back, it means it has been over proved.
  3. If the indentation slowly bounces back and leave a small indentation, it is ready to bake. 
  4. There will be a final burst of rising once the bread is placed to bake in the oven and it is called oven spring. 
WRINKLE TOP OR SHRINKING
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 the tip of the dough just reaches the rim of the pan, around 80% - 90% in size.

BAKING TEMPERATURE AND TIME
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.

SOURDOUGH BRIOCHE (LIQUID STARTER)


Sourdough Brioche with Soft and Fluffy Crumb

Sourdough Brioche with Soft and Fluffy Crumb

I made a few attempts to bake a Sourdough Brioche and am finally to achieve the texture that I'd like it to be.    This is not the traditional Brioche that is very rich and eggy.  This is a lighter Sourdough Brioche that is very fluffy and soft. It'll be good for people that would prefer something that isn't so greasy and rich and yet still enjoy the taste of Brioche. 

Some time ago, I made Brioche using instant yeast.  It was nice, however I still think it is a a little too rich and the crumb is not as fine as this.  I was inspired to bake it again after trying some brioche that my brother in-law bought.

RECIPE - SOURDOUGH BRIOCHE (LIQUID STARTER)

Yields:  8 pull-apart buns in 450g loaf pan

INGREDIENTS:

Levain - 190g total (ratio 1:1:1):
65g sourdough starter (100% Hydration)
65g bread flour (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
65g water

Main Dough:
255g bread flour (I used Japan High Gluten Flour)
190g levain (above)
50g brown sugar 
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs, whisked (about 108g without shell)
20g full cream milk (whole milk)
1/4 tsp of vanilla extract or paste (optional)
80g butter, room temperature

Egg Wash:
1 egg + 1 tbsp water, whisked

Utensil:
450g Loaf pan (20 X 10 X 10 cm) or (8" X 4" X 4")

With Raisin and Orange Candied (Optional)
Please soak 50g golden raisin and 35g orange candied with 2 - 3 tablespoon of rum a night before.  Add into the dough after achieving window pane stage and then continued kneading for about a minute until incorporated at low speed.  

METHOD:

OPTION 1 - SCHEDULE TO BAKE IN THE MORNING
  1. Levain (7.00 pm)
    1. Mix all ingredients in a jar and cover.
    2. Let it ferment in room temperature in tropical climate (approximately 29C - 30C) until tripled.  It took about 3 - 5 hours. You will loose some that stick to the jar.  So, you will yield 190g of starter.
  2. Main Dough (Around 11.00 - 11.30 pm)
    1. Put all ingredients (except butter) including the 190g sourdough starter (levain) into a bowl of stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix 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 in two batches and continue knead for 15 minutes or until reach window pane stage. Window pane stage is crucial if you want to achieve fluffy texture.  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.
    2. Let the dough rest for 15 minutes -  60 minutes in the same bowl, covered with cling film or the lid.  (I rest this dough for 15 minutes).
    3. Transfer the dough to a floured table top.
    4. Divide dough into 8 equal portions and shape into balls (please refer to the diagram).
    5. Place bun onto the loaf pan.  
    6. Let it proof overnight at room temperature (25C - 27C) until 90% of the size, about 1.5cm below the rim of the pan.  I placed in an air-conditioned room.  It took approximately 8 hours. 
  3. Baking (Around 9.00 am)
    1. Preheat oven at 190C (top & bottom heat) or 170C (fan-forced) for 10 - 15 minutes.
    2. Brush with egg wash.
    3. Bake in a preheated oven for 25 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
    4. Remove bread from oven and let them cool on rack.

OPTION 2 - SCHEDULE TO BAKE IN LATE AFTERNOON OR EVENING
  1. Levain (the night before)
    1. Mix all ingredients in a jar and cover. Ratio 1:3:3 = 28g starter + 84g flour + 84g water.  You will get slightly more than 190g.  But, you will need only 190g.
    2. Let it ferment in aircond room temperature (approximately 25-27C) overnight until tripled.  It took about 10 - 12 hours. 
  2. Main Dough (The next morning)
    1. Put all ingredients (except butter) including the 190g sourdough starter (levain) into a bowl of stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix for 2 minutes or until all incorporated.  Change to hook attachment and knead for about 3 - 5  minutes or until the dough comes together. Add in butter in two batches and continue kneading for about 15 - 18 minutes or until reach window pane stage.  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.
    2. Let the dough rest for 15 minutes -  60 minutes in the same bowl, covered with cling film or the lid. 
    3. Transfer the dough to a floured table top.
    4. Divide dough into 8 equal portions and shape into balls (please refer to the diagram).
    5. Place buns onto the loaf pan. 
    6. Let it proof in room temperature (29C - 30C) until until 90% of the size, about 1.5cm below the rim of the pan.   It will take approximately 3 - 5 hours or longer.
  3. Baking 
    1. Preheat oven at 190C (top & bottom heat) or 170C (fan-forced) for 10 - 15 minutes.
    2. Brush with egg wash.
    3. Bake in a preheated oven for 25 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
    4. Remove bread from oven and let them cool on rack.





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27 comments

  1. Hi, would you mind share with me how to prepare your sourdough starter?
    Thank you

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Thanks for visiting my blog. I learnt from this Youtube:

      https://youtu.be/m6pGkOuZnrk

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  2. Hi this looks wonderful, can you recommend a good substitute for the eggs please?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Thanks for reading this recipe. I have not tried any eggless brioche recipes yet. For now, I do not know what is best. I wonder whether can replace egg with whole milk?
      Cheers :)

      Delete
  3. I usually see 50%+ hydration in breads/brioche but this is using only small amount of milk but can yield soft fluffy bread. Does hydration affects the fluffiness?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for reading this recipe and asking. The total hydration for this recipe is about 63%. I included eggs as liquid. Most of the liquid is from the levain.

      Usually the more water in the dough, the more open the final bread's crumb which allow for a greater volume in proofing (rising).

      When you have enough liquid in the dough, you will get more gluten development. The fluffiness is from the gluten development. I used Japan High gluten flour in this recipe too.

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  4. This turned out amazing! Thanks for the recipe!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for trying and your kind feedback. Glad that you like it. My pleasure :)

      Delete
  5. Hi,
    Do you use yudane on this dough? it seems the video adds yudane but on your ingredients there's no mention about it. Just want to make sure, thank you for posting! Looks delish

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi, thanks for reading this post. No, I don't use Yudane in this recipe. The video is for Shokupan Sourodugh Bread I set it as featured video that will appear in all the posts.

    Sorry for confusion.

    Cheers :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hello, may I know what did you use to soak the raisin & orange peel? And how much liquid is required? Thank you

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hello, may I know what did you use to soak the raisin & orange peel? How much liquid is needed to soak?

    Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, sorry I missed out the rum. Please soak with rum. About 2 - 3 Tbsp.

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  9. Oops.. I didn't read till the end. Haha.
    I did option #2. But I did levain for option 1. 65g each of everything! Waiting to proof bfr oven

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hahaha! I hope it's ok. Thanks for trying. Looking forward to hear your result :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. I would like to share my bakes with you but don't know how. Thank you so much for sharing recipes.. murah rezqi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for trying this recipe. You can share Facebook or Instagram and tag me or send message to my Facebook or Instangram.

      Instagram Link: https://www.instagram.com/bakewithpaws/
      Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/bakewithpaws

      Looking forward to see your bread.

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  12. Love love this recipe! I spread the dough with black sesame paste, braid it and bake in a loaf pan. Turned out so good! Much much better than normal brioche which is too rich for me. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for trying this recipe and your kind feedback. It is great idea to spread with black sesame paste. Sounds so yummy.

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  13. Tried this recipe and it turned out really well. Delicious! Thank you for this recipe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for trying this recipe and your kind feedback. Glad to hear that you like it.

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  14. hi there, can i substitute milk powder with whole milk? i dont have milk powder at home.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for reading this post. I don't use any liquid in main dough except eggs because most of the liquid are in the sweet stiff stater. Maybe you can use milk to prepare the stiff starter. However, I have not tried and not sure it will affect the proofing.

      I will try one day and share.

      Cheers:)

      Delete
  15. My dough is quite wet, did I add too much water in main dough? Only read the notes to reserve water instead of putting in all. Now 2nd proofing and not sure of outcome.
    Do I need to bake longer for wetter dough?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, thanks for trying and your feedback. This dough is quite wet compared with other bread dough. The kneading time is longer too. The dough will eventually become very elastic, smooth and soft. The liquid in the main dough is egg.

      For my oven, I baked at 170C (Fan-forced) for about 30 mins. But, each oven behalf differently. So, adjust accordingly to your oven.

      Cheers :)

      Delete
  16. Hi, I cannot find the video how to shape the flower bun. May I ask where can I find it? Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Sorry for the inconveniences. Some system errors. I just rectified it. Please have a look again. It is there now.

      Cheers :)

      Delete

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